The NFL’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers are “interested in speaking” with UGA coach Kirby Smart, per CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora.
Here’s what La Canfora wrote:
“With (Nick) Saban completing another historic season at Alabama, multiple teams conducting head-coaching searches want to speak to him this week, knowing full well it may be close to impossible to land him. The allure of Saban and his accomplished assistants is significant at a time when many candidates for jobs lack the proven ability to assemble a staff and manage a game and personalities the way he has. In particular, sources said that Tampa Bay’s ownership – still hopeful of making a splash – would be interested in speaking to Georgia coach Kirby Smart, a former Saban assistant.”
Despite the report, it’s hard to believe that Smart would be interested in leaving UGA for the Bucs or any NFL team. Smart, 43, is already one of college football’s highest-paid coaches and UGA is his alma mater.
The Bulldogs seem like Smart’s “dream job,” but reports and rumors like this will be annual event when a college coach has had enormous success in short time, as Smart has enjoyed at UGA. In three years with the Bulldogs, Smart has posted a 32-10 record and an appearance in last year’s national championship game.
Back to the CBS article: It primarily focused on NFL interest in Saban, who was disappointing as coach of the NFL’s Miami Dolphins in 2005-2006. However, that hasn’t stopped other NFL teams from wanting to talk to Saban again over the years after his sustained success at Alabama.
Nevertheless, at 67 years old, Saban seems closer to retirement than he does returning to NFL.