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Mike Mularkey cancels interview with Broncos
Question of the Day
“I respect the decision that Mike Mularkey has made to not interview with the Broncos at this time,” John Elway, the Broncos‘ new executive vice president of football operations, who is spearheading the search, said via his official Twitter account. “I wish Coach Mularkey and the Atlanta Falcons the best of luck in the playoffs.”
Mularkey was set to interview with the Broncos on Friday night. ESPN reported that Mularkey wants to focus on the playoffs but will still interview with the Cleveland Browns on Saturday because they called him first. The network also said Mularkey would be open to an interview with the Broncos if the job is still open after the Falcons‘ season is over.
When talking about coaching candidates during his re-introductory news conference Wednesday, Elway said, “I don’t believe that anyone is going to come over and say, ‘I don’t want Tim Tebow.’ If they do, then maybe they are not the right guy for the job.”
With Mularkey scrubbing his interview, the Broncos‘ search committee that includes general manager Brian Xanders, team president Joe Ellis and owner Pat Bowlen, will remain in Denver preparing to interview New York Giants defensive coordinator Perry Fewell and interim Denver coach Eric Studesville, both on Sunday.
Elway said he wanted to hire a coach who already had head coaching experience, preferably in the NFL, and both Fewell, 48, and Studesville, 43, have been interim head coaches, Fewell for seven games in Buffalo in 2009.
“I don’t believe anybody that’s not had that NFL experience can make that jump _ other than Harbaugh. There’s nobody (else) in the college ranks that we’re interested in talking to,” Elway said. “And preferably we’d like to have some head coaching background in the NFL, but it’s not a must. If there’s a guy who’s a coordinator that’s up and coming and shows that he can be the head coach and understands that, then he’ll be the guy.”
Two people with knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press that Harbaugh is set to meet Miami Dolphins officials in the San Francisco area. Both people spoke on condition of anonymity because the meeting was to remain confidential.
Tony Sparano is still the Dolphins’ coach, but owner Stephen Ross flew to California to visit Harbaugh on Thursday. A day earlier, Harbaugh met with the San Francisco 49ers about their coaching vacancy.
Harbaugh returned Tuesday to the Bay Area following Stanford’s 40-12 Orange Bowl victory over Virginia Tech in Miami. Ross, Dolphins CEO Mike Dee and general manager Jeff Ireland were on the Stanford sideline before the game.
Harbaugh is expected to command the highest price tag of any candidate on the market.
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