Bruce Pearl's Replacement Search Makes Brad Stevens, Shaka Smart Popular Names In Knoxville

We know Tennessee Volunteers basketball's search for a new head coach began almost immediately after Bruce Pearl was fired, if not sooner. We also know Houston Fancher has been named the interim head coach until a new full-timer can be named. But which coaches are Vols media and fan sites listing as potential replacements?

InsideTennessee.com lists bios on pretty much everybody, from Sweet 16 hot shots like Butler coach Brad Stevens and VCU coach Shaka Smart to Vols alum Rick Byrd, currently the coach of Atlantic Sun tyrant Belmont. Former Kentucky and Georgia coach Tubby Smith and Alabama coach Anthony Grant are two other coaches listed there who have extensive SEC experience, which could be a positive factor.

Rocky Top Talk adds several names to the Bruce Pearl replacement discussion, including Boston Celtics assistant Lawrence Frank. The web's best Tennessee fan community also considers the obligatory Larry Brown rumor, dismissing the longtime NBA coach's interest at returning to coach college hoops. 

The Sporting News' Mike DeCourcy also recommends Byrd, along with providing a list of all coaches who've become newly available so far this season. What kind of contract could Mike Hamilton come up with for Paul Hewitt? The mind gasps and shudders.

For more on Tennessee sports, visit Rocky Top Talk daily.

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