Posted by Chip Patterson
UPDATE: Official word from the Virginia athletic department is that any stories regarding Mike London's direct or indirect contact with Penn State about a coaching position are "simply not true." The Cavaliers, trailing only Virginia Tech in the Coastal Division standings, face Duke at home on Saturday.
After nearly half of a century, the Penn State head football coaching position is open. While interim head coach Tom Bradley prepares the current roster for a run at the Big Ten title, the school has already begun looking toward the future. According to a local report, Penn State has already begun targeting potential candidates. One of the first of which being Virginia head coach Mike London.
CBSSports.com's Jim Rodenbush reports that Penn State contacted London before Paterno was officially dismissed by the Board of Trustees. According to the Washington Post, London told Trustees Charman Steve Garban that he was not interested in the job.
While London has no specific ties to the Nittany Lions, he did spend three seasons on the Virginia coaching staff under then-defensive coordinator Al Golden. Golden, former tight end and team captain at Penn State, has been immediately suggested as a candidate for the job, though the Miami head coach insists that he and his family are happy in Coral Gables. London eventually followed Golden as defensive coordinator for two seasons before spending two seasons as the head coach at Richmond.
In only his second year at Virginia, London already has the Cavaliers bowl eligible and in contention for an ACC Coastal Division title. With a focus on in-state recruiting and rebuilding pride in the program, London's strides in Charlottesville deserve the attention he has been receiving. His "no thanks" to Penn State likely has as much (if not more) to do with the success at Virginia than the issues in State College.
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