Testaverde, Vilma to help Miami with coaching search
CORAL GABLES, Fla. (AP) Vinny Testaverde and Jonathan Vilma are part of Miami's past, and have been asked to help decide who will lead the Hurricanes into the future.
Testaverde and Vilma are part of the coaching search advisory committee, revealed by the school Monday. Testaverde won the 1986 Heisman Trophy at Miami, went on to play 21 NFL seasons and his son Vincent is a backup quarterback for the Hurricanes. Vilma was part of Miami's last national-title team in 2001 and was a three-time Pro Bowler.
The school is seeking a replacement for Al Golden, who was fired last month midway through his fifth season and one day after Miami fell to Clemson 58-0 in the worst loss in Hurricane history.
''We are well underway in our search process,'' Miami athletic director Blake James said. ''And, as expected, there is already a tremendous amount of interest in `The U.'''
Former Miami coach Butch Davis, who recruited and coached Vilma before leaving the Hurricanes in 2000, has openly said he wants to return to the Hurricanes. The school has not identified any people under consideration.
Other members of the committee that will assist James with the decision include Miami trustees Hilarie Bass, David Epstein and Steve Saiontz, as well as Deputy Director of Athletics Jennifer Strawley.
Miami has also hired Korn/Ferry, a search firms well-versed in coaching searches, to assist with the process. Korn/Ferry has played a role in placing numerous coaches and executives in jobs - a list that includes recent notable moves such as Stan Van Gundy becoming president and coach of the Detroit Pistons, Jim Harbaugh taking over as coach at Michigan and Charlie Strong as coach at Texas.
''We are reaching out to a number of UM constituencies to engage in dialogue and to hear their thoughts and vision,'' James said. ''We will work diligently to find a great fit for Miami.''
The Hurricanes (6-4, 3-3 Atlantic Coast Conference) play their home finale Saturday against Georgia Tech. Miami has not won an ACC title in any of its 12 seasons as a member of the conference, including this season, and has not reached the 10-win mark since 2003.
Miami is 2-1 under interim coach Larry Scott.