Just as Pitt was dealing with a coaching change during last year’s college football bowl season, SMU appeared to be headed for the same. Mustangs head coach June Jones was rumored to be headed toward a deal to become Arizona State’s next head coach.
But things seem to have fallen apart at the 11th hour, and Jones, for now, is staying put as the SMU head coach:
Leigh Steinberg is Jones’ agent and posted this on his website/blog:
“Just had one of the most bizarre endings to a set of productive discussions to bring a client to a new situation. Everything was set, few tweaks left, and the principal decision maker yanks the deal w no real explanation.”
While Pitt's situation could have been a huge distraction for the Panthers, the team played just fine under interim coach and defensive coordinator Phil Bennett last season. Still, it’s a distraction that SMU is probably glad they won’t have to deal with for the time being.
For more on Pitt and the BBVA Compass Bowl Game, check out Cardiac Hill.