Tennessee got itself into an insane mess over the weekend by hiring, then backing out of an agreement with Greg Schiano. Now, embattled athletic director John Currie needs to make a quick, solid hire to placate the masses. There are only two potentially available coaches who could do that: Tee Martin and Jeff Brohm.
Martin obviously makes the most sense, given his status as a legend at Tennessee. USC’s current offensive coordinator led the Volunteers to a national championship in 1998 and many have expected him to return as head coach one day. Martin has been at USC since 2012 and has built a reputation as one of the nation’s top recruiters.
While USC’s offense hasn’t been as consistent as expected this season, the Trojans are still averaging 489 yards per game, which ranks 13th nationally. Martin’s offense is also extremely balanced, averaging 292.1 yards through the air and 196.5 on the ground each game.
While he’s never been a head coach before at any level, the 39-year-old Martin has been waiting his turn for a long time. He’s on the verge of getting a head gig, and Tennessee seems like the logical place for it to happen. The fans in Knoxville love him and he’d be an easy sell for Currie because he “gets” the school’s culture.
While other options are certainly out there, the name other than Martin who makes the most sense is Purdue head coach Jeff Brohm.
Brohm took over an abysmal Purdue program that had gone 9-39 over the past four seasons. In his first year on campus, Brohm has the Boilermakers bowl-eligible at 6-6, while they also had close losses against Louisville, Wisconsin, Rutgers, Nebraska and Northwestern. Purdue is on the way up after just one year under its new head coach.
West Lafayette isn’t Brohm’s first head coaching stop; he also posted a 30-10 record in three seasons at Western Kentucky, including a 12-2 campaign in 2015. He’s proven he can win football games and his wide-open, modern offense is something Tennessee could desperately use.
Brohm is 46, a former NFL player and someone who has been in the coaching profession since 2002. He knows his way around the game, was an accomplished assistant and has already shown he’s a good head coach. He’d be a fantastic hire.
Luckily for Tennessee fans, rumors suggest Currie has contacted both Martin and Brohm. Either guy would be a great hire.