James Franklin was reported by ESPN, and Bruce Feldman of CBS Sports that he was accepting the head coaching position at Penn State, but Thursday afternoon still no formal announcement had been made and Vanderbilt athletic director David Williams says he had not accepted the job.
From @AP: Vanderbilt AD says James Franklin remains the Commodores’ coach. Franklin has informed him that he has not accepted another job.
— Sporting News (@sportingnews) January 9, 2014
According to the Tennessean, Williams said he has not spoken to Franklin today, but defensive end Caleb Azubike has and he said he talked to coach within last hour and “he hasn’t made a decision yet. And he’s still pondering. Don’t believe the media.”
Update (4:00): Williams joined 104.5 The Zone in Nashville to comment on Franklin. Quotes transcribed by Coaching Search.
“We’re going to have a great football program here,” Williams said. “I have a great football coach. When we open up against Temple, I expect James Franklin to be on the sideline of that game, and not coaching Temple. If by chance he’s not, we’ll have somebody in there. To the fans: Just hang in there with us. He’s our football coach.”
“James reached out to me today to tell me, ‘The things you’re hearing that I have accepted a job are untrue.’ I didn’t make that call. He made the call to me. He knew what was being said. He’s not saying, ‘I might not go,’ he said, ‘I want you to know, what you’re hearing right now is untrue.’ That has happened a number of times since we’ve been here.”
Franklin has gone 24-15 in his three years at Vanderbilt, including back-t0-back nine-win seasons with the Commodores, something unthinkable prior to his arrival, but perhaps he is having second thoughts about leaving the program to return to his native Pennsylvania.
Franklin was born in Langhorne, Pa., and played quarterback at East Stroudsburg University.
Stay tuned as this latest coaching search has taken a number of twists and turns in the recent hours.