Here’s the latest from I have from Wednesday, day 2 in the search for a new Citadel football coach:
– Former Citadel All-America Everette Sands sounds like he’s happy to stay for now at South Carolina, where he’s running backs coach for Steve Spurrier. Sands, 41, told rivals.com on Tuesday, “Not sure if it’s the right time for me” to return to Citadel as head coach. He also said, “I definitely one day want to be the head coach at The Citadel. The big thing is right now, is it the right time for me and my career.” That pretty much jibes with what he told me off the record on Monday. Certainly understandable for a man in his position; a few more good seasons at USC and who knows where Everette might wind up.
– Army has received permission from Georgia Southern to speak to Eagles coach Jeff Monken about its open head-coaching job, Donald Heath of the Savannah Morning News reported. That would seem to indicate that ex-Citadel coach Charlie Taaffe is well down Army’s list, if he’s on it at all. I’m still told that Taaffe, the offensive coordinator at Central Florida, is very interested in a return to The Citadel, where he led the Bulldogs to the SoCon title in 1992. I know that he and Kevin Higgins discussed the job before Higgins resigned on Monday to go to Wake Forest.
– A source tells me that Citadel grad David Sollazo, now the defensive line coach and associate head coach at UMass, has applied for the job at The Citadel. Sollazo was on the Charlie Taaffe staff that won the SoCon title and worked with Taaffe at Maryland.
– Another candidate who has support from some Citadel grads is Paul Hamilton, the former ETSU and Elon head coach who is now at Brevard. Hamilton is a Charleston native and former Citadel assistant who also worked at Air Force, where he had great success as an OC. He also helped install the triple option at Wofford with Mike Ayers.
– Two staffs to keep an eye on are those at Air Force and Navy. Both run similar enough option offenses to The Citadel’s that a transition would seem to be fairly smooth. Navy AD Chet Gladchuk was a boss and mentor to Citadel AD Larry Leckonby at Houston and Boston College, so there is a solid connection there. Navy’s staff has several possible candidates, including Citadel grad Keith Jones (secondary); OL coach Chris Culton; DC Buddy Green, former head coach at Chattanooga; OC Ivan Jasper; and running game coordinator Ashley Ingram. Citadel president Lt. Gen. John Rosa was president at Air Force; that staff includes Furman grad Clay Hendrix, an associate head coach, OC and OL coach.
Green, I’m told, definitely has interest in The Citadel. He’s 60 and has been at Navy for 12 years.
– Among Citadel graduates, I know former player and assistant coach Maurice Drayton has strong interest in returning; he most recently coached with Ellis Johnson at Southern Miss. Kenny Carter, now at Louisville, has expressed interest in the Citadel job during past searches and recently interviewed for the head coaching job at Eastern Michigan.