If head coach Butch Jones is out at Tennessee -- and if could be sooner rather than later if the Volunteers lose to South Carolina on Saturday, the big question becomes: Who’s next?
Jones’ seat is one of the hottest in the SEC and in the country after a devastating last-minute loss to Florida earlier this season and a 41-0 drubbing by Georgia on Sept. 30. Tennessee (3-2, 02 SEC) had an off week this past Saturday and plays host to the Gamecocks at noon on Saturday.
The latest, wildest speculation has ESPN Monday Night Football analyst Jon Gruden in the running to become the Vols’ next coach.
SEC Network radio host Paul Finebaum said he was told that Gruden would be the leader for the Vols if they make a change.
Never miss a local story.
Even wilder speculation would include the name Peyton Manning, the former Vols quarterback great.
Bet online released these odds to the question: Who will be Tennessee's head coach at the beginning of the 2018 season?
Chip Kelly +325 (risk $100 to win $325)
Jeff Brohm +450 (risk $100 to win $450)
Bobby Petrino +450
Mike Norvell +750
PJ Fleck +800
Bob Stoops +900
Tee Martin +900
Les Miles +1000
Jim Bob Cooter +1800
Dan Mullen +1800
Jon Gruden +2000
Brian Kelly +2500
Peyton Manning +10000
Lane Kiffin +10000
CBSsports.com’s Tom Fornelli rules out Gruden and Manning, but likes the possibility of former Oregon coach Chip Kelly or Louisville’s Bobby Petrino.
Also, according to USA TODAY’s Dan Wolken, USF coach Charlie Strong could be in the mix for the Tennessee and Ole Miss jobs, should either make a change.
Strong’s stint as Texas head coach didn’t go well, but the first-year USF coach is 6-0 and No. 18 in the AP Poll.