It seems we'll never know now about what would've been the biggest risk/reward candidate in the Vols' coaching search. The AP is reporting that Will Muschamp has been named the ever-popular coach-in-waiting at Texas, taking him off the list of candidates at both Tennessee and Clemson.
Muschamp, the Longhorns' defensive coordinator with previous DC stints at LSU and the Dolphins under Nick Saban, followed by two years at Auburn, will see his salary more than double to $900,000 under this new deal.
Mack Brown is 57 years old, and with the Longhorns currently ranked fourth and still very much in the national championship chase, and just three years removed from their '05 title, it's safe to say right now that Brown has as many years left in front of him as he wants.
Texas joins Kentucky and Florida State as major conference programs who've gone down this road in naming a successor with the current coach still employed. This does help eliminate any distractions down in Austin, and should narrow the focus of the Vols' coaching search.
It was risk/reward, like I said, so we'll never know and thus it's hard to be really upset about this, though I know several of us around the community were on board in going in Muschamp's direction at one point or another.
Muschamp and Butch Davis were at the top of my personal list when all this started, so now as the fantasy Mike Leach/John Chavis combo moves atop it, I'm sure it'll only be a matter of time before that one's shot down, too.
Whoever we get, let's hope we all get behind him.