A Modest Proposal for UT's New Head Coach

Lane Kiffin's announcement to leave Tennessee to head West sent shock waves through the world of college football and recruiting. In response to the controversial move, Heath Cline has penned an open letter to Vols' athletic director Mike Hamilton.

TO: Mike Hamilton, Tennessee Athletic Director  

FROM: Heath Cline, FightinGators.com  

SUBJECT: Head Coaching Search  

Mike -  

Would have called to offer my assistance with your coaching search, but I know you're super busy trying to strong arm Lane Kiffin's early entry recruits into staying against their will right now and might not have been able to answer the phone. I assume that's why you hired the Neinas Sports Services search firm again - the Kiffin hire they helped you with worked out so well, why not do it again a year later? While I'm prepared to beat their price in the future, I'm willing to give you a free recommendation this time.  

Everyone's speculating that you're looking at guys like Texas defensive coordinator Will Muschamp and Air Force head man Troy Calhoun right now. Come on, that's crazy talk! Muschamp has even less head coaching experience than Kiffin did. UT is not a starter job for a head coach - the guy I have in mind for you has head coaching experience at two BCS schools already. Admittedly Calhoun's been recruiting a bunch of kids who'll soon be shooting M-16s on campus, which seems like it might be a good fit with UT athletes given recent events, but he has no SEC ties at all. My guy has been an SEC head coach, and to make it an even better fit he was a Tennessee assistant before becoming a head man.  

No, I'm not talking about David Cutcliffe! Hiring a Duke head coach known for his offense to come to the SEC is a ridiculous idea that would never work. Cutcliffe's not enough of a recruiter anyway. You wanted Lane for his recruiting skills - my guy would find a way to recruit Layla Kiffin back to Knoxville if that's what you want him to do. You liked that Lane had an NFL defensive coordinator for a dad, right? Your perfect choice actually WAS an NFL defensive coordinator before coming back to the SEC as a head coach. You want a coach who's driven to beat Florida in the SEC East? I promise you my candidate would wake up every day with beating the Gators the number one thing on his mind.  

There is a catch here - the man I've got in mind for you is still coaching and under contract through 2014. Despite that, I think with a little sweet talk you can convince his school to let him out of the deal. He's the only man who's conclusively proven he can stop Florida from dominating Tennessee in the SEC East, and he can be in Knoxville by the weekend for the press conference. I can see the signs around Knoxville now: WELCOME BACK RON ZOOK! He's more qualified for the job and has a better winning percentage than Kiffin did when you hired him. Make it happen, Mike, and then sit back and watch him work his magic.  

No need to thank me, just wanted to help.  

Heath Cline

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