Gruden: No offer to coach Vols with Browns' stake

Jon Gruden

Photo by Tony Avelar, 2012 AP

Jon Gruden

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Jon Gruden says he hasn't received an offer to coach the Tennessee Volunteers in a deal that would include becoming part owner of the Cleveland Browns.

Memphis television station WREG reported Gruden was weighing a Tennessee offer that would give him a piece of the Browns, who are owned by Jimmy Haslam — brother of Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam. Their father, Jim Haslam, played on Tennessee's 1951 national championship team and has donated millions of dollars to the university.

Gruden, a former NFL coach and current ESPN analyst, said Wednesday on ESPN's "Mike & Mike In The Morning" show that there is "no truth" to the report.

"I like what I'm doing," said Gruden, who was a graduate assistant with the Volunteers and whose wife Cindy is a former Tennessee cheerleader. "I'm just trying to hang on to the job I have, to be honest with you."

Browns spokesman Neal Gulkis said the report was inaccurate.

"Jimmy Haslam has no involvement in the University of Tennessee head coaching search, and the report that Jon Gruden would potentially have an ownership stake in the Browns is completely erroneous," Gulkis said.

Tennessee is seeking to replace Derek Dooley, who was fired Nov. 18 after going 15-21 in three seasons.

Volunteers athletic department spokesman Jimmy Stanton said the university would not discuss details of its coaching search.

"We won't talk about any of the dynamics of the search until it is finalized," Stanton said.

Gruden, 49, helped the Tampa Bay Buccaneers win the Super Bowl in the 2002 season. He posted a combined 100-85 record and won five division titles in 11 years as an NFL head coach with the Oakland Raiders (1998-2001) and Tampa Bay (2002-08).

Gruden began his coaching career as a graduate assistant on Johnny Majors' Tennessee staff in 1986-87, but he hasn't worked in the college ranks since a one-year stint as Pittsburgh's wide receivers coach in 1991. His other college experience includes one year as Southeast Missouri State's passing game coordinator (1988) and one season as the University of Pacific's wide receivers coach (1989).

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AP Sports Writer Teresa Walker contributed to this report.

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Comments » 13

LovinMyVols writes:

"He posted a combined 100-85 record and won five division titles in 11 years as an NFL head coach with the Oakland Raiders (1998-2001) and Tampa Bay (2002-08)."

5 division titles in 11 years. Pretty darn good in the NFL (not to mention a SUPER BOWL win)

Orangepuddinskin writes:

He is denying these rumors because he had not seen the offer until after the interview on Mike and Mike. LOL.

Also, "Jon Gruden says he hasn't received an offer to coach the Tennessee Volunteers in a deal that would include becoming part owner of the Cleveland Browns."

He never denied not having an offer without ownership of the Browns.

Conspiracy theory 101.

RoyaltyVol writes:

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Jon Gruden says he hasn't received an offer to coach the Tennessee Volunteers in a deal that would include becoming part owner of the Cleveland Browns.

Notice he didn't say he had been offered the job, only that he hadn't been offered the job with the Browns being a part of the deal

scvols writes:

in response to powerTbaby:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I think you are 100% correct. Move on people, nothing to see here.

tomatosoup writes:

in response to powerTbaby:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

So sorry to admit this but but YOU are CORRECT!!! The later we go into this month and December says to me 1) We do not have Gruden 2) We will be loosing the "great" commits we have thus far for next year and 3) We are in for a long, long, long road ahead of us! Living in Northern, VA I'm the biggest UT fan but come on...all my buddies can't believe we hadn't made a decisiion by now and how bad of an impact this is going to set us back!!! Oh well, UT comes on up here to play Georgetown this Friday so I will be chilling at work Friday waiting for 6:30 PM and hoping the mens bball team pulls a big upset. Heck, if we win, we will be back in the top 20 (unfortunately, something the football team will not see for a long time) :{ Go Vols!!!

CantStandCantStandSaban writes:

I think my head is going to explode the next time I hear Gruden's name. I like him as a broadcaster, but I'm so friggin tired of all of the speculation, rumors, unnamed sources, etc.
Suppose it's my own fault for wasting so much time reading message boards.

Rock85 writes:

Bring Gruden to CHUCKY TOP RALLY, Gate 21 SAT HIGH NOON..GO AHEAD HART MAKE OUR DAY... Bring signs, Chucky Dolls, music, bull horns, Hot Chicks, Not so hot hicks, PLEASE LEAVE PITCH FORKS AT HOME FOR NOW...

Rock85 writes:

in response to CantStandCantStandSaban:

I think my head is going to explode the next time I hear Gruden's name. I like him as a broadcaster, but I'm so friggin tired of all of the speculation, rumors, unnamed sources, etc.
Suppose it's my own fault for wasting so much time reading message boards.

GRUDEN !!!! BOOOOOMMMM

TKO writes:

No matter who the new coach is I believe it will be announced by December 10th. Time is critical now

tedstryker1980 writes:

The entire Vol nation is losing their minds. Gruden is a helluva drug. It probably won't happen but can you imagine if it did? Chucky dolls in orange checkerboard overalls!

DwayneElizondoMountainDewHerbertCamacho writes:

in response to powerTbaby:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I HATE that my gut tells me to agree with you.

At this point, a decision on Gruden needs to be made on the hill. Is he in? Are we willing to do what it takes to get him? What's going on?

If he's out, then UT administration needs to say that he's out.

As for the people saying "Trust Dave Hart." I say, "Why?" His last hire at ECU was not a home run. He didn't hire Saban. He didn't hire Fisher. Why should I believe that this guy has some ace up his sleeve. All he's done is destroy the women's program and made sure that UT Athletics stops giving $6 million a year to academics like every other program.

James Franklin is going to kill us this year in recruiting.

Sad...sad...sad day.

I really, really hope I'm wrong, but then I hoped that I was wrong about Dooley too. Hope is not a course of action (*as I nod my head to my favorite GoVols screen name*).

DwayneElizondoMountainDewHerbertCamacho writes:

Just hire PETRINO! He isn't a leper. We can get him cheap and then up his salary to keep him when he starts winning. He's an amazing coach that knows how to win. God bless! It's psychotic that UT's AD isn't even seriously considering this. It's stupid. A few people will grumble and take their money away, but the winning will cure all of that.

If we're not going to hire Gruden, just hire Bobby Freaking Petrino and lets get back to winning. PLEASE!!!

Theo writes:

in response to tomatosoup:

So sorry to admit this but but YOU are CORRECT!!! The later we go into this month and December says to me 1) We do not have Gruden 2) We will be loosing the "great" commits we have thus far for next year and 3) We are in for a long, long, long road ahead of us! Living in Northern, VA I'm the biggest UT fan but come on...all my buddies can't believe we hadn't made a decisiion by now and how bad of an impact this is going to set us back!!! Oh well, UT comes on up here to play Georgetown this Friday so I will be chilling at work Friday waiting for 6:30 PM and hoping the mens bball team pulls a big upset. Heck, if we win, we will be back in the top 20 (unfortunately, something the football team will not see for a long time) :{ Go Vols!!!

You and your buddies should try and relax. Has anyone hired a coach other than KY who hired a coordinator? All the good head coaching candidates are preparing for bowls and would not be available to really interview and certainly not have an announcement made.
I don't think recruits will make a jump at this point. If we go Jan. 1 without a coach yes. Big football pow wow end of next week. Maybe something out of that.

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