A couple of very interesting reports regarding the coaching vacancy at Illinois, which fired Bill Cubit this morning.
According to the Chicago Tribune’s David Haugh and WBBM-TB’s Ryan Baker, former Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Chicago Bears head coach Lovie Smith is a serious candidate for the job.
— Ryan Baker (@RyanBakerMedia) March 5, 2016
Early in process and situation fluid but 2 NFL sources in past hour texted to say they’ve heard Lovie Smith will be candidate at Illinois.
— David Haugh (@DavidHaugh) March 5, 2016
If this is true, the 57-year-old Smith seems to be a curious fit. Yes he has a strong coaching resume and an NFL pedigree, but he’s never been anything more than a position coach at the collegiate level. In fact, Smith hasn’t coached in college since mentoring the Ohio State defensive backs in 1995.
Will the Illini bet on Smith’s name and football acumen over recruiting connections and college experience? Time will tell.