The Tennessee Vols’ search for a new offensive coordinator has seemingly stalled in recent days, due to the coaching carousel unfolding in a curious way.
Chip Lindsey isn’t returning to Auburn next season as the Tigers’ offensive coordinator. In a bit of a twist, Lindsey is likely heading to Kansas to team with Les Miles.
Hearing that Chip Lindsey is in discussions to become the new Offensive Coordinator at #Kansas. Would be a big get for Les Miles. Lindsey developer Nick Mullens for Southern Miss & put up huge numbers there.
— Bruce Feldman (@BruceFeldmanCFB) December 3, 2018
Lindsey’s decision has put several of the Vols’ top targets in a holding pattern.
Hugh Freeze is likely waiting to see what happens at Alabama. The same can be said for Bama quarterbacks coach Dan Enos. Each of those coaches could be in play for Alabama if current offensive coordinator Mike Locksley takes a head coaching job.
Another wrinkle is that Freeze is reportedly a candidate for the recently vacated head coaching job at Liberty. Freeze is also an option for Auburn (though I still think that’s an unlikely move).
So what happens if Tennessee doesn’t hire Freeze or Enos?
Well, they’ll have to explore some of the names mentioned early during the search that have been forgotten in recent days.
Brandon Streeter — Clemson quarterbacks coach
Streeter is viewed by the folks as Clemson as an extremely bright coach who could be their future offensive coordinator if Tony Elliot were to leave for a head coaching job.
The former Clemson quarterback has play calling experience after serving as the offensive coordinator at Richmond. During his time there, Richmond routinely finished among the top offenses in the nation. Streeter has also served as Clemson’s recruiting coordinator.
Check out more about him here.
Jim Chaney — Georgia offensive coordinator
I’m not really sure why Jim Chaney would want to leave Georgia, but he would clearly be a good option to return to Rocky Top.
Chaney was Tennessee’s offensive coordinator from 2009-2012. He served under Lane Kiffin and Derek Dooley. The Vols’ offense excelled in 2012, thanks to talented players like Tyler Bray and Cordarrelle Patterson.
Georgia has finished in the top 20 in scoring offense the past two seasons.
Freddie Kitchens — Cleveland Browns
I didn’t really view Kitchens as a realistic option for the Tennessee when the Vols first started this process, despite his close relationship with Jeremy Pruitt.
That’s because I think he has a future in the NFL as an offensive coordinator — even if he isn’t retained in Cleveland.
But the Browns’ dreadful offensive showing against the Texans last weekend might have slowed the NFL hype around Kitchens. I still think he’s a creative mind that could do well at Tennessee. Hiring Kitchens would be similar to Nick Saban hiring Brian Daboll in 2017 to be Alabama’s offensive coordinator.
Featured image via Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports