Tom Herman reportedly contacted SEC AD about coaching vacancy
In a bombshell that even had Paul Finebaum trying to pick his jaw up off the floor, there is a belief in South Carolina that Texas coach Tom Herman contacted Gamecocks Athletics Director Ray Tanner to show interest in is his recent head football coach opening.
Gene Sapakoff, a columnist with the Charleston Post & Courier, said on “The Paul Finebaum Show” on the SEC Network that Herman did just that. Asked about South Carolina hiring Shane Beamer instead and his perspective, Sapakoff shared these thoughts.
“I like him more than say Tom Herman,” he said, “who I’ve been told called Ray Tanner the South Carolina athletic director, and I’m not going to say beg for the job, but my sources say that he was quite interested.”
The statement floored Finebaum, who asked Sapakoff to double down after the host said he fell out of his chair. Finebaum recalled that Herman turned down South Carolina before it hired Will Muschamp.
“I didn’t say he quite begged, he did call, I’ve got good sources that said that,” Sapakoff said. “To kind of refresh you Paul, he was somebody that South Carolina coveted when they hired Will Muschamp, they wanted him, he was the hottest candidate of that coaching cycle. But he wisely chose Texas and then you go to Kirby Smart, he’s going to go to his alma mater, Georgia. They considered (Justin) Fuente, he went to Virginia Tech. And so there was some Ray Tanner discussions way back then. I think Tom Herman, I’ve got a lot of people I know at the University of Texas too, and he sees what was possibly coming this year and what is really coming next year and that is he is No. 1 on the hot seat. Especially with the way Jimbo’s recruiting at Texas A&M and what’s going on at TCU. Longhorn Nation’s not putting up with that. I think he was looking to get out ahead of the posse.”
Sapakoff said he hasn’t had a chance to speak directly with Tanner, but he knows he took the call seriously. Knowing Tanner, Sapakoff said he may have met the call with a little bit of an eye roll, as if, “where were you when I really wanted you, and I’m not all that interested.”
Sapakoff added that while it would’ve made sense from Herman’s point of view, South Carolina fans likely would’ve been disappointed.
“I’m not gonna say he begged for the job, but my sources say he was quite interested.” —@Sapakoff reports that before the Gamecocks hired Shane Beamer, Tom Herman was pushing himself for the job. pic.twitter.com/kAe2o02Mp9
— Paul Finebaum (@finebaum) December 15, 2020