According to Rivals college football analyst Mike Farrell, Kentucky head coach Mark Stoops is firmly entrenched on the site’s “Hot Board” of contenders to replace Brady Hoke as the next head coach at the University of Michigan.

Farrell shared the news with Jen Smith of the Lexington Herald-Leader on Tuesday following Hoke’s dismissal from the university after four seasons on the job.

Ohio is a high school football hotbed located in the heart of “Big Ten country.” Stoops and his family of head coaches (you’re probably familiar with his brothers Bob and Mike) hail from Youngstown, Ohio, and all three have strong recruiting ties in the state. Mark Stoops’ ability to recruit in that state appear to be a major selling point on his list of qualifications for the Michigan job.

Farrell really drove the message home when he explained what kind of company Stoops is keeping on Michigan’s “Hot Board” as of Tuesday afternoon.

Stoops, who just completed his second year at Kentucky, has had his contract extended twice since arriving in the Bluegrass, with the latest extension coming in late October of this year. He now stands to earn $18.5 million throughout the next five years, beginning with the 2015 season. He made $2.6 million this season and will make $2.85 million next season if he remains at Kentucky.

However, that extension did not include a buyout clause, meaning Stoops could leave for another job without Kentucky receiving so much as a penny in return. This could make Stoops even more appealing to schools with openings, and could leave Kentucky vulnerable should another school out-bid the Wildcats for Stoops’ services.

There has been no news regarding any contact made between Michigan and Stoops, and the Kentucky head coach has not commented on the job opening at Michigan as of Tuesday afternoon.