University of Utah Football Coach Jim Fassel has surfaced as a candidate for the vacant head coaching position at Stanford, but he says he isn't seeking the job.
Fassel is among six coaches who have been mentioned by San Francisco Examiner sports writer Mark Soltau as prime candidates to replace Jack Elway, who was fired Monday. Others were Washington State's Dennis Erickson, UTEP's Bob Stull, UCLA assistant Steve Axman, 49ers' assistant Denny Green and Giants' assistant Ray Handley. Green, Handley, Axman and Fassel all have coached at Stanford as assistants and Erickson was an assistant to Elway at San Jose State.Fassel said Tuesday morning he had not been contacted by Stanford officials. "Nope. No, nobody's called me," he said.
Fassel, who has a 21-25 record in four years at Utah, was an assistant coach at Stanford 1979-83.
"Really, my main response is that, obviously, Stanford is very close to me and I've got a lot good friends over there. But I'm very happy here and have never thought about another job since I came here. I've been doing player interviews, and they keep saying, `You're not going to Stanford, are you?' I say `no.' I figured my name would probably be involved."
The 39-year-old Fassel did not rule out the possibility of talking with Stanford officials. "That's a tough question because I have no desire to leave this place. But it's kind of hard if a friend calls you.
"I have no designs on leaving, but on the other hand, it's hard when your friends ask you to talk."
Fassel continued, "The assumption is that if you talk, you'd take the job if it was offered. But that's not necessarily the case."
Fassel reportedly has one year remaining on his contract with Utah.