Dear "ProfBrax": My guess is that you nearly sent me an e-mail late last week asking, “Why have you been silent on Clawson and Cincinnati?”
Of course, by the time you were starting to string those 140 characters together, the Bearcats were busy naming Tommy Tuberville as their next coach.
Coaching searches are an interesting tango. The search begins with either good news (a promotion to a higher-paying job) or bad news (a pink slip), and from there it begins to take on a life of its own.
The 24-hour news cycle is such that, whenever a coach leaves, the first question asked is invariably: “Who are the candidates to replace him or her?” And there are times that question is asked even before an athletic director can create a list, much less start to talk to candidates.
A good search takes time … time to search out candidates, time to vet candidates, and then time to talk to candidates – to see if there is a fit for both sides.
Since I have been “silent” on the Temple football job, let’s talk about it for a moment. Here are links to Philadelphia Daily News stories on the job search …
Here Daily News sports writer Mike Kern talks about what Temple is looking for in a coach.
By my count, Kern names seven candidates for the job, none of whom are Clawson. Does that mean Clawson is NOT a candidate? No. It means Kern didn’t list him as a candidate, nothing more.
Click here to read a story by Keith Pompey and Joe Juliano that talks about Eagles defensive coordinator Todd Bowles interviewing for the job. It lists six candidates, none of whom are Clawson.
And click here to read the Inquirer blog for Temple, which has posts on several of the candidates who have interviewed.
Again, no mention of Clawson.
I have seen the Tweets about Clawson being a candidate at Temple. But here’s why I remain “silent” on them: Until he interviews for a job at another school, what’s the point of Tweeting that he is a candidate? There are dozens on candidates for every job.
In short, when he becomes a “serious” candidate –- say, a finalist for the job, for example –- then we’ll have some news. That’s the only fair way to treat this annual December carousel.
Otherwise, you reach a situation similar to the one Clawson faced several years ago. Someone reported that Clawson was involved in the coaching search at East Carolina, which turned out to be blatantly false. But it misrepresents the news, gets used (negatively) in recruiting, and makes everyone involved look bad.
In this instance, silence is golden.
Thanks for writing, John.
Have a question you would like me to answer? Post it as a comment (click on the "comments" link below) or send me an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. I will edit for clarity, length and style, but I promise you will recognize your question when you read it. Looking forward to hearing from you!