Rich Rodriguez overachieved in his first season as the Arizona Wildcats’ head coach, going 7-5 and earning a spot in the New Mexico Bowl.
Apparently, other programs are noticing.
Both Auburn and Tennessee have reportedly shown some interest in hiring Rodriguez to replace their fired coaches. CBS Sports’ Bruce Feldman tweeted today that Auburn had interest in both Rodriguez and UCLA’s Jim Mora, though the Tigers are now apparently focusing on Alabama defensive coordinator Kirby Smart. FootballScoop.com reported Tennessee’s interest in Rodriguez in this tweet.
Arizona hired Rodriguez, formerly of Michigan and West Virginia, last November as Mike Stoops’ permanent replacement. Rodriguez said at the time that he hoped the UA would be his last job before retirement. Rodriguez made $1.45 million plus bonuses this season. Tennessee canned Derek Dooley last month; Auburn is looking to replace Gene Chizik, who won a national championship two years ago but quickly fell out of favor.
It's probably just Internet chatter for now, and — for Rodriguez — it's undoubtedly nice to be wanted. Time will tell if there's anything to it.