Washington Interested In Tice

Vikings coach Mike Tice acknowledged Thursday that the University of Washington is interested in him as a candidate for their head-coaching post.

Mike Tice has built something of a fan club in NFL circles among those who support his style of coaching. But his popularity isn't limited to just the NFL.

Tice's name has surfaced in talks about a new head coach at the University of Washington, where Tice still maintains a home and plans to retire. But, he has other things to concern himself with now.

Tice acknowledged a report in a Seattle newspaper that included his name as a potential candidate, but said his concerns are more with the Vikings right now than worrying about selling himself as the best candidate for a college job.

Tice's contract expires at the end of the season and, if the Vikings don't make the playoffs or go one-and-out, the possibility exists that he would be let go. However, UW officials are hoping to have their next coach selected before then -- which might take Tice out of the running.

* Raonall Smith practiced Thursday and his headaches have subsided, giving the Vikings cautious optimism that he can play next week vs. the Lions.
* Antoine Winfield is recovering nicely from his high ankle sprain and might be able to play in a limited role vs. Detroit.
* The Vikings are on pace to not have a 1,000-yard rusher or receiver for the first time since 1992.
* The Seahawks offense is ranked 10th overall in the league -- sixth rushing and 16th passing -- while their defense is rated 18th -- 12th vs. the run and 25th vs. the pass.
* The Vikings offense is ranked third in the NFL -- 14th rushing and second passing -- while the defense is rated 26th overall -- 23rd vs. the rush and 24th vs. the pass.
* The Seahawks have the fewest penalties in the NFL with 65.
* Since 2001, Matt Hasselbeck has been a killer in the red zone, throwing 41 touchdowns with just two interceptions.

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