Before the Munchak firing, Penn State seemed to have zero in on three coaching candidates. Those candidates were Greg Schiano, James Franklin, and Al Golden. However today, it looks like the list has been narrowed significantly, with two names falling out. Now it looks like a two man race between two Nashville coaches.
Al Golden (Miami HC)- OUT of the race
Golden was a strong candidate for the job, but he held a press conference today saying he was staying at Miami. With that news he is out of the race.
Greg Schiano (Tampa Bay Buccaneers HC)- Doubtful
While the early indication was that Penn State would make a play for him, it seems like neither party is very interested. Schiano hasn't made any headlines saying that he was looking to go back to college, and the Nittany Lions haven't made any public inquiries on his availability.
James Franklin (Vanderbilt HC)- Still in contention
Franklin, the Vanderbilt head coach, has an interview set up for tomorrow. While it looked like he had a strong chance to have the first serious interview, it appears that advantage will go to another Tennessee coach.
Mike Munchak (Tennessee Titans HC)- Frontrunner?
Mike Munchak is on his way for an interview for the head coaching job today. Munchak was a dominant offensive lineman during the Paterno era, and he may be a guy that fans of Jo-Pa would like to see.
On paper, Munchak believes in a strong running game and an old school style of football. His idea of "power football" may be a big draw for those making the decision. Also, if the Penn State shot callers value someone who has had NFL experience, then Munch might get another advantage going into this interview.
Update 10:07 EST:
Beat writer Jim Wyatt offered this update:
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>Just talked to former <a href="https://twitter.com/search?q=%23Titans&src=hash">#Titans</a> coach Mike Munchak just a bit ago. He did not interview at Penn State today. Cleaned out his office at STSP</p>— Jim Wyatt (@jwyattsports) <a href="https://twitter.com/jwyattsports/statuses/420026996484091904">January 6, 2014</a></blockquote>
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This could just be an issue with semantic, meaning that Munchak and those in charge have been talking but he hasn't physically interviewed with them. This could also mean that Munchak is not the frontrunner like previously thought, and that James Franklin will still be getting the first interview (a clear advantage in coaching interviews). This will be updated if more news comes out.