Martin to Illinois?

Tennessee Vols head basketball coach Cuonzo Martin received a coaching offer from the University of Illinois according to a source in Chicago.  According to, Martin denied any interest in leaving Tennessee on Wednesday. 

This is not the first time something like this has happened in the SEC.  Years ago, Alabama football head coach Nick Saban denied on several occasions that he would leave his position as head coach of the Miami Dolphins for the Alabama opening.  Weeks later, Saban signed with the Crimson Tide. 

Will Martin do something similar?  All indications at this juncture say “no.”  According to another article on, Martin signed a Memorandum of Understanding at UT, which said that in the event of Martin leaving for another job he would owe UT $2.6 million. 

If Martin is looking for a pay raise, Illinois would have to offer him a considerably higher amount that UT did just so Martin could pay the debt to UT.  And even then, Martin could still decide that he likes the direction of his current team as opposed to Illinois’. 

But, as the case was with Saban, keep an eye on Martin as surprises with coaching changes do occur.


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