John Currie left Kansas State last February to accept his dream job as athletic director at Tennessee. Less than a year later, the Volunteers decided to fire him, according to several reports.
ESPN college football writer Chris Low reported Friday morning that Tennessee had parted ways with Currie. Several Knoxville news outlets reported the same.
Currie’s ouster at Tennessee comes amid one of the most disastrous coaching searches in recent memory. Tennessee appeared ready to announce Ohio State defensive coordinator Greg Schiano as its new coach earlier this week, but the Volunteers backed out of the deal because of backlash from fans.
After that, Currie pursued several big names, including Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy, Purdue coach Jeff Brohm, Duke coach David Cutcliffe and North Carolina State coach Dave Doeren. But they all remained at their current schools.
Currie had reportedly zeroed in on Washington State coach Mike Leach on Thursday, but Tennessee officials asked Currie to return to campus rather than make a deal with Leach, according to Low’s report. He was fired Friday morning after just nine months on the job.
Currie left behind a fascinating legacy at K-State, where he worked from 2009 until early this year.
He helped guide the athletic department to previously unimagined fundraising levels and transformed K-State’s facilities with $210 million in upgrades, including major enhancements at the football stadium. But he was also unpopular with fans, and some coaches.
Many blamed him when popular basketball coach Frank Martin left for South Carolina, and he had a reputation as a micro manager. He failed to build a good relationship with K-State football coach Bill Snyder and fans still haven’t embraced Bruce Weber as basketball coach.
K-State administrators thanked Currie for his years of work and wished him well as he left Manhattan, but fans seemed content to bring in a new face.
K-State replaced Currie with current athletic director Gene Taylor in April.
Kellis Robinett: @kellisrobinett