The following is a transcript of their conversation:
You know, I'm wondering something. You have conversations with different coaches -- athletic directors -- and I know you have a lot of relationships.
Everybody in the country right now knows that you're kind of looking for a new head coach. Do you get phone calls everyday? Do people say, "You may want to look at so and so"? Does that happen quite a bit now?
Not everyday but yes it happens quite a bit. But certainly not everyday. I think it was interesting down at the SEC meetings that if I had a conversation with a coach that I've had a relationship with, there were people kind of looking and noticing.
You know, Les Miles and I have known each other since 1987 when I worked with him. So when we have a conversation, you know, people just kind of look. (Thinking) What are Jeff and Les talking about?
But it's an interesting time for us. It gives me a great deal of time to do a lot of research on prospective coaches, and you know, I said the other day that's kind of good and bad because you really have almost too much time to delve into backgrounds and do research. But overall I think it's good and we do have a great amount of time to really look in and develop the kind of profile we want for the next coach and who fits that profile.
So with that being said.
Just one, two, three, four -- give me your qualifications for the guy you're looking for.
Well, I don't have an order but I will tell you that obviously we've got, as we continue to say it, the most competitive conference. We've got to have a tough hard-nose coach who can deal with the battles. I think we need to have one that has a forward looking approach, a positive looking approach.
You know, I was impressed with the number of people who reached out initially. Most of those were people that were interested in the job at the end of the season because it was a unique time, an unusual time with no spring football practice, that most people weren't interested in engaging us at that time. But you know, I think we'll have a depth of talent interested in this job and we'll see as the process unfolds who will eventually be our head football coach.
So it's safe to say -- end of the season -- you'll have no problem choosing a coach that probably quite a few people are very familiar with and a very successful coach?
Yeah, I think so. And again, as we sit here today -- I think that we would be attracting a sitting head coach and somebody with an established resume.
However, I'm also not going to rule out an offensive or defensive coordinator because you know, everybody -- as athletic directors -- we're looking for the next Bob Stoops. A guy who went from defensive coordinator in the two years at Oklahoma, won a national championship.
So there are guys out there that are highly regarded offensive and defensive coordinators that may be the right time, the right fit. But again, the season will play out. Coach Smith will have an opportunity to win this job. And if as he said and I've said, it will be clear at the end of the season what direction we're headed.
I know it's hard predict. It's hard put a number on it.
But if you can, is there a number...is there a record that Coach Smith has to have in order to maybe keep the job he has for another year?
That's a reasonable question but no I don't put a number on it. I really can't. If you did, you know, then everybody's going to be -- as the season goes along -- well is he going to make that number? And so I don't deal in that.
It's going to be, as I said, a difficult season. Because with every victory there'll be people who are saying that hey it's time to lock Coach Smith up. With a loss, it'll be hey he didn't make the best decision for the program. That comes with the territory. I know that.
But no, I don't put out those numbers for Coach Smith. I mean, we've got to evaluate the season as we go through the season and then we'll get to the end of the year and then it will be clear to us I think whether it's the right decision to maintain Coach Smith as our head coach or whether it is to go out on a search and bring in a new leader.
If you missed part one of the exclusive interview, CLICK HERE
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