Mike Munchak: Job Is His to Take as Penn State Lines Up Plan Bs

Aaron McKinneyCorrespondent IIIJanuary 1, 2012

NEW ORLEANS, LA - SEPTEMBER 01: Head coach Mike Munchak of the Tennessee Titans looks on  during their pre season game against the New Orleans Saints at the Louisiana Superdome on September 1, 2011 in New Orleans, Louisiana (Photo by Sean Gardner/ Getty Images)
Sean Gardner/Getty Images

Throughout the search for Joe Paterno's replacement, we have seen coaches mentioned and their names disappear in matters of days.

Mike Munchak has still not formally been interviewed, but that will change in the next 48 hours.

The Tennessee Titans still hold some improbable playoff hopes going into their meeting with the Houston Texans. Oddly enough, Penn State will be playing the Houston Cougars in Dallas on Monday in the TicketCity Bowl.

The search committee has handled Munchak with kid gloves throughout the entire process by not contacting him, presumably because his team has been embroiled in a battle for the playoffs.

That doesn't mean he hasn't heard all the rumors and chatter about how much the alumni base wants him to rebuild the program.

I realize he's been away from Penn State since 1982 and with the Oilers/Titans organization for 30 years, but the blue-and-white blood that courses through Munchak's veins may be proving thicker.

It has become clear the he's conflicted

The committee is lining up its backup plans, in the forms of Tom Bradley and Tom Clements for sure and possibly others. In fact, Bradley and Clements may be plan Cs solely because neither would turn down the offer even if half a dozen other candidates turned it down. 

The fact remains that Munchak is the guy Penn State has wanted since the search began. His not being contacted yet actually shows the respect that has been given to him, with his current team still in playoff contention.

You can bet, though, that there will be a face-to-face meeting sometime shortly after his Titans play today.

We'll know much more then.