Sources high in FIU’s administration told The Miami Herald the school had been informed that former University of Miami coach Butch Davis did not want FIU’s head football coach job.
Davis’ business relationship and friendship with FIU athletic director Pete Garcia at UM and the Cleveland Browns put him atop the public and media speculation as Mario Cristobal’s replacement minutes after Cristobal’s firing Wednesday.
Davis, who spent the 2011 season out of coaching after his firing from North Carolina as NCAA investigators swarmed Chapel Hill, has been a special assistant to Greg Schiano with the NFL’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers this season.
Attempts to reach Davis were unsuccessful.
FIU’s attention turns to the Florida panhandle, where Florida State offensive coordinator James Coley works. Coley, a 39-year-old Miami native and Miami High graduate, was an assistant at Norland High when it won a state football title and could recruit the area well.
Also interested in the job is North Texas offensive coordinator Mike Canales. Canales, 51, did two turns as offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at South Florida, another school hunting for a new head coach.
Expect South Florida to call Florida-phile Cristobal if the lead coaching targets, Western Kentucky head coach Willie Taggart and former Ole Miss and Arkansas coach Houston Nutt, fall through.
Garcia said he wanted to name a coach by the first week of January.