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  1. #1
    RamWraith's Avatar
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    Fresno's Hill joins Fassel on Rams' list: Head coach search

    By Jim Thomas

    FILE PHOTO: Jim Fassel
    (Bill Kostroun/AP)

    Monte Kiffin's not necessarily out. Jim Fassel's in (St. Louis). And Pat Hill is the "mystery" interview. Such is the state of the Rams' head-coaching search as team president John Shaw and president of football operations Jay Zygmunt begin to wind down the first phase of the interview process.

    As of Wednesday afternoon, the Rams had all but ruled out Kiffin - Tampa Bay's defensive coordinator - as a candidate. But Shaw spoke at length with Kiffin on Wednesday evening and apparently did some successful lobbying. Because on Thursday, Kiffin told reporters in Tampa that he wasn't ruling out making a run at the Rams' job.

    "I had a long talk with John Shaw, the president there (Wednesday) night," Kiffin told Buccaneers reporters. "I do have to weigh a few things. I have a great relationship with Jon (Gruden) and Bruce (Allen), and the fans are great here."

    Gruden is the Bucs' head coach; Allen is the team's general manager.

    "I love the place (Tampa Bay) and really feel like the future is bright," Kiffin, 65, continued. "But I'm still giving (St. Louis) some consideration. I don't think there's a timetable. They want me to come for an interview. You can't just go for an interview for the sake of going for an interview, so I have to decide on some things."

    Fassel, meanwhile, arrived in St. Louis on Thursday afternoon for an interview with Shaw and Zygmunt. Fassel, 56, has been with the Baltimore Ravens for the past two seasons, serving as offensive coordinator this past season, and working as a senior consultant for the team in 2004.

    Before that, he was the New York Giants' head coach from 1997 through the 2003 season, compiling a 60-56-1 record. The Giants were NFC champions for the 2000 season and lost to Baltimore in the Super Bowl. Under Fassel, the Giants won two NFC East titles and also made the playoffs in 2002 as a wild-card team.

    Fassel previously interviewed with Kansas City, but the Chiefs job went to Herm Edwards. He has been mentioned as a possible candidate for Oakland and the New York Jets but is not believed to have interviewed in either spot yet.

    As for Hill, the head coach at Fresno State, he was quietly ushered into St. Louis earlier in the week and interviewed Tuesday by the Rams. According to league sources, he is the "mystery" interview mentioned as an unidentified coaching candidate in the Post-Dispatch on Thursday.

    On Wednesday, Hill released a statement to the media in Fresno, Calif., confirming that he has been contacted by several NFL teams but declining to provide other details.

    "I'm not going to name the teams ... but only say there is genuine interest," Hill said in the statement. "Since becoming head coach at Fresno State, I have never interviewed for another job, but with so much interest at this time from NFL teams, I owe it to my family to look and listen.

    "Because of that, I have told the NFL teams I've spoken with that they have a 10-day window in which to interview me for their head-coaching position. That time frame was well thought out and will close in time for the Fresno State football program to move forward with both recruiting and team preparations for the 2006 season. Because that window does not meet the schedules of some of the NFL teams, I will not be interviewing with every team that has expressed an interest in me."

    Obviously, that 10-day window has started, because before the Rams interview, Hill interviewed with the Houston Texans and is scheduled to meet with Oakland in the next few days.

    Hill and Fassel bring to six the number of candidates interviewed in person by the Rams, joining defensive coordinators Ron Rivera (Chicago), Tim Lewis (Giants) and Mike Zimmer (Dallas), plus offensive coordinator Scott Linehan (Miami).

    In addition, league sources told the Post-Dispatch on Thursday that Shaw has interviewed Pittsburgh offensive coordinator Ken Whisenhunt on the phone and probably will interview him in person early next week if the Steelers are eliminated from the playoffs Sunday in Indianapolis.

    Candidate update

    Pat Hill

    Fresno Statehead coach

    "Mystery"interview tookplace Tuesday

    Jim Fassel

    Baltimoreoff. coordinator

    Interviewed Thursday in St. Louis

    Monte Kiffin

    Tampa Baydef. coordinator

    Hasn't ruled out making a run at the Rams job

  2. #2
    cowboyhater's Avatar
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    Re: Fresno's Hill joins Fassel on Rams' list: Head coach search


    No! No! No!

    Hey, if he can't make it in New Jersey, he can't make it anywhere. (2000 was the weakest NFC SB team in memory).
    Last edited by cowboyhater; -01-13-2006 at 03:29 PM.

  3. #3
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    Re: Fresno's Hill joins Fassel on Rams' list: Head coach search

    I'm not sure I'd want Kiffin, he seems to be unsure and the cover 2 is starting to become yesterdays news. We need a younger, more energetic coach like Rivera or Lewis. Fassel would be a "If all else fails" candidate. I think Shaw is just covering all the bases. If you recall, Vermille was the last man on the list back in 97' after several candidates turned down the HC job.

    Adm. William "Bull" Halsey

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    Re: Fresno's Hill joins Fassel on Rams' list: Head coach search

    Quote Originally Posted by RAMMAN68
    I'm not sure I'd want Kiffin, he seems to be unsure and the cover 2 is starting to become yesterdays news.
    Tampa's D was horrible this year wasn't it? :tongue:


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