Mark Dolejs-US PRESSWIRE
Duke head coach David Cutcliffe says he will not take the Tennessee job, saying that he'll return to coach Duke next season instead of entertaining offers for the job left open in the wake of the Derek Dooley firing.
David Cutcliffe preemptively withdrew his name from the list of potential candidates for the vacant Tennessee Volunteers head coaching job, as he confirmed he'd continue to coach the Duke Blue Devils next year.
With Derek Dooley's firing official as of Sunday, Cutcliffe's name popped to the top of the minds of many wondering who would take the job in Knoxville: Cutcliffe would already be a valuable coaching commodity just for turning around a cellar-dwelling Duke program into a team that will appear in its first bowl game since 1994, but he also has ties to Tennessee. Cutcliffe coached at Tennessee from 1982-1998 and then again from 2006-2007 before taking the Duke job, winning the Frank Broyles Award for the nation's top assistant when the Vols won the 1998 national championship. But he said he's sticking in Durham:
"I can tell you right now that I'm going to be coaching at Duke next year," he said. "I'm very happy here, and this is where I’m going to be. I can put that to rest because that’s a fact."
Cutcliffe had also withdrawn his name from consideration after Lane Kiffin left Tennessee for USC in 2010. Although most college football fans would probably consider Tennessee to be a more prominent college football destination than Duke, Cutcliffe will try to continue the upward momentum his team has.