There's a lot of chatter in the media this morning about the Browns head coaching search, and not a small amount of apparent confusion as conflicting reports emerge about the current status of the search. Here's an early Tuesday morning update, with links to supporting stories in the media.
It's Over, Or Is It?
Ever since ESPN's Chris Mortenson reported the other day that Romeo Crennel was the leading candidate for the Browns head coaching job, there have been a bunch of subsequent stories which reference that report to make a similar claim. The net result of this is that it looks like Crennel is an unstoppable force, will get the job, and perhaps even be the subject of a bidding war between the Browns and 49ers.
I have expressed some skepticism about these reports in the Ask the Insiders forum, namely due to the fact that they started appearing prior to the Browns staff and Randy Lerner having an opportunity to meet as they said they would prior to last week's press conference. Secondly, Lane Adkins has said that the terminology Mortensen used, that Crennel "blew them away", was slightly more enthusiastic than what his sources had been telling him.
Perhaps the most aggressive point of view comes from Warren Tribune-Chronicle and Bernie's Insiders writer Mike McLain in this morning's Tribune-Chronicle.
Mike suggests that the team "might have" shut down the interviewing process after Monday's interview with interim head coach Terry Robiskie because of Crennel and, like Mortenson, uses league sources. Most interesting is that Mike states that Brad Childress has been scratched from the list and that Grimm is a "long shot". ESPN, presumably using league sources, says that Crennel faces "stiff competition".
In this morning's Plain Dealer, Tony Grossi mentions that Crennel has been "hailed by national pundits" and drops the first outside-of-ATI mention of Jim Schwartz, the defensive coordinator from Tennessee.
So, we're getting a couple of different stories about what the Browns' brass is thinking, which probably suits them just fine.
Jim Bates on the List
Again, this will come as no surprise to Bernie's Insiders subscribers who have been reading the ATI forum, as Lane Adkins has been saying since late last week that Bates should be kept in mind as a candidate. Lane also has offered several other names which are just now starting to pop out in the press as potential candidates.
What's clear is that Bates isn't headed back to Miami as he, along with old friend Marc Trestman, have parted ways with new ultra-coach Nick Saban. Bates will be interviewing with Lerner, Collins, and Savage today, as will Ravens defensive coordinator Mike Nolan. According to reports, former Giants head coach - and current Ravens consultant Jim Fassel will talk to the team later this week.
All of these interviews are taking place in New York, far away from the prying eyes of the Cleveland sports media.
Return of Robo?
One of the more interesting comments in the local press is from Jeff Schudel, who offers in his story about the coaching interviews that Robiskie has said that he might be content to stay with the Browns in another capacity if not named head coach. It stood out because this is a question asked by many dawgs in the Bernies Insiders forums as folks look for a way to inject new blood into the organization while not losing the well-liked Robiskie.