As we go through Week 3 of "Tennessee Without A Football Coach," you probably have concluded that UT isn't any closer to naming a new coach than it was in Week 1.
That's why I would recommend that UT athletic director Mike Hamilton release the names of coaches who aren't being considered as Phillip Fulmer's successor.
UT could call it the "No Shot List." It would serve a two-fold purpose.
First, it would send a message to fans that progress is being made. It also would make them feel better about their program.
Unfortunately, a coaching search often lowers the self-esteem of your fan base, which gets tired of hearing coaches indicate they aren't interested in the job. Never mind if the coaches really are interested. Their "not interested" comments create a negative aura about your program.
So why not pull a reverse?
By listing coaches you have eliminated or are not considering, you send the message: "They're not good enough for us."
I realize Hamilton is a busy man, but this wouldn't take long. In fact, it easily could be delegated to any one of UT's 300 associate or assistant athletic directors. They could make it a daily news event. Actually, they could make it a twice-daily news event.
A UT administrator could mass e-mail media late morning and early evening of each day.
For example, a late-morning release might read something like this:
"The University of Tennessee has eliminated from its coaching search anyone name 'Mike' who has ever coached at Alabama."
The more newsworthy release would be held until late evening:
"The University of Tennessee is no longer considering New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick as a head-coaching candidate.
"Mr. Belichick had been considered for a couple of reasons. Obviously, his longtime success in the NFL success was a factor. So were his Tennessee roots.
"But being born in Tennessee doesn't mean you're qualified to run UT's football program. And being successful in the NFL doesn't mean you will be successful in college football.
"Although UT athletic director Mike Hamilton considers Mr. Belichick an excellent coach, he was concerned that all of his experience is at the pro level. He also wonders how a recruit's parents might react to Mr. Belichick showing up at their door wearing a sweatshirt and hood.
"In adding Mr. Belichick's name to our 'No Shot List,' we certainly don't want to take away from his accomplishments, and we wish him the best in his future endeavors. He's just not for us."
The largest headline in the next News Sentinel would read: "Belichick out as candidate."
Subhead: "Hood no good for UT."
Sports editor John Adams may be reached at 865-342-6284 or firstname.lastname@example.org.