Momentum Swings Towards Chavis

ATHENS – Momentum is moving in the direction of John Chavis for Georgia's vacant defensive coordinator job.

Chavis met with the media Wednesday, but did not discuss the Georgia opening. Instead he dodged any inquires into the matter by trying to talk about LSU's upcoming game with Penn State.

According to multiple reports when asked directly if he was going to be coaching at LSU next season Chavis responded: "I'll be happy to talk about the bowl game and anything beyond that, I want to leave it like it is."

As many in the media are pointing out, Chavis did not deny interest in the Georgia job, but he also did indicate interest either. LSU head coach Les Miles' said earlier this week that he was aware of Georgia's interest in Chavis, but that as of Wednesday at noon Mark Richt and Georgia have not yet officially contacted LSU regarding Chavis.

Chavis' non-answer comes after weeks of back and forth with other coaches. Richt has been turned down outright by Virginia Tech defensive coordinator Bud Foster, who said he was not interested in the job after flirting with the Dawgs earlier this month. Illinois defensive coordinator Vic Koenning may have thought he was going to be the next defensive coordinator at Georgia, but turned out to stay in the Midwest. Dawg Post has been informed that Richt's interest in Chavis is the reason Koenning was not pursued further for the job.

Chris Low, who is a veteran reporter who happens to work for ESPN (and is much more reliable and credible than others at that network) is reporting that "the Bulldogs are prepared to pay $600,000 or more per year and would give Chavis a three-year contract."

Dawg Post is unable to confirm the salary number used in Low's report at this time. Still, a multi-year contract seems likely for whoever the next defensive coordinator is considering the landscape of assistant coaching contracts in college football these days. Also, Gannett Newspapers (The Lafayette Daily Advertiser and The Shreveport Times) LSU beat writer Glenn Guilbeau reported Wednesday that "LSU was trying to match Georgia's offer to keep Chavis" according to an LSU athletic department official.

Low and Guilbeau's reporting indicates that Richt has given an unofficial offer to Chavis for a three-year deal worth in the neighborhood of $600,000, but that the Tigers may push the deal higher if LSU makes a big run at the former Tennessee coach.

Richt has said on the record in the recent past that he didn't think the hiring would take place until after the New Year. LSU and Chavis, coincidentally, play on New Year's Day in the Capital One Bowl.

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