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The Whittled List: "Finalists" in the Search

After analyzing the reporting of various media outlets, including the Tennessean, the Washington Post, ESPN, and even Nashville radio station 104.5 The Zone, it's becoming more and more clear that Vanderbilt has whittled its list of potential head coaches to about four or five names (barring any surprises). These are those names, alphabetized.

James Franklin, Offensive Coordinator of the Maryland Terrapins. Considered to be the Maryland "head coach in waiting", though apparently there may be questions beginning to surface about whether that may still be the case going forward.

Gus Malzahn, Offensive Coordinator / Quarterbacks Coach of the Auburn Tigers - Darkhorse candidate. Jeff Lockridge of the Tennessean told 104.5 the Zone that discussions have been under the radar.

Greg Roman, Assistant Head Coach / Assistant Head Coach of the Offense / Tight Ends Coach / Offensive Tackles Coach of the Stanford Cardinal - is said to have had an excellent interview.

Don Treadwell, Offensive Coordinator of the Michigan State Spartans. Filled in succesfully for Mark Dantonio as he dealt with his much publicized heart attack earlier this year.

Shawn Watson, Offensive Coordinator of the Nebraska Cornhuskers. There is some confusion over whether or not Watson is still in the running. Considering he appears to be on the hot seat at Nebraska, I would consider him the long shot of the group at this point.

If I've learned anything during this whole process, it would be that a) CBS/CSTV owns the market on the official websites for college athletics programs (Vanderbilt being no exception); b) Vanderbilt is conducting this search with extreme delicacy, as some of the candidates they may have or may be considering would certainly be wary of having their name connected to the search; and c) if you have the means, I highly recommend subscribing to or, or both, to supplement your AOG-fix. Subscribers have better access to the "sensitive" information that I am often aware of but unwilling to share, in the interest of making sure the process works as smoothly as possible for Vanderbilt (seeing as I have some sort of interest in them being as successful as possible).