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More coaches deny interest in Texas

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Possible candidates continue to deny their interest to fill the head football coaching vacancy at the University of Texas.

The latest coaches in denial mode Tuesday: Louisville's Charlie Strong, UCLA's Jim Mora and Michigan State's Mark Dantonio.

Strong insists he's not thinking about the Texas speculation.

"I don't even think about it," Strong said, via Louisville Courier-Journal. "I don't even worry about it. I have a good job here. I have a really good job here. There's a lot of work to be done here. The only thing I can control is what's happening right here."

Mora was asked by reporters about the Texas opening on Tuesday.

"It's flattering," Mora said. "I think it says a lot about our program and the direction we're heading. But I am very, very, very, extremely, delightfully happy to be the head coach at UCLA and want to be for a long, long time. I couldn't be happier and more excited about the future of UCLA football. I'm happy they want me here."

At Michigan State, Dantonio's was asked about the Texas job at his Tuesday press conference.

"I guess the way I'd answer that question is I see Michigan State as the destination, not a stop," he said "That's how I see it. Flattering, but that's how I see it."

There are even odds on who will be the next Longhorns coach.

Gambling website Bovada.lv has list of potential replacements for Mack Brown, who announced on Saturday night that he is resigning after the Dec. 30 Valero Alamo Bowl game in San Antonio against Oregon.

According to the gambling website, Strong is a prohibitive 2/1 favorite to move on to Austin.

Strong is finishing up his fourth season at Louisville and his name has been connected to various high-profile openings during that time.

Here are the odds for the next coach at Texas:

--Charlie Strong (Louisville): 2/1

--Art Briles (Baylor): 9/2,

--James Franklin (Vanderbilt): 5/1

--Mike Gundy (Oklahoma State): 7/1

--Bill O'Brien (Penn State): 15/2

--Chip Kelly (Philadelphia Eagles): 10/1

--Jim Mora (UCLA): 10/1

--David Shaw (Stanford): 10/1

--Jimbo Fisher (Florida State): 15/1

--Jim Harbaugh (San Francisco 49ers): 20/1

--Mike Tomlin (Pittsburgh Steelers): 20/1

Meanwhile, the Orlando Sentinel reported that Fisher is being mentioned as a strong candidate at Texas.

The Texas job is considered one of the best coaching positions in the country because of the program's tradition, recruiting base, elite facilities and deep-pocketed boosters.

Fisher's stock has never been higher, with his No. 1 Seminoles slated to face Auburn in the BCS Championship Game on Jan. 6.

NFL head coaches Mike McCarthy of the Green Bay Packers, Kelly of Eagles, Tomlin of the Steelers and Harbaugh of the 49ers are among those who seem to have no interest in the Texas position.

Kelly said Monday that he is not looking to move.

"I understand you have to ask the question," he said. "I'm not involved in any jobs. I haven't talked to anybody. It's just speculation. I haven't spoken to anybody, nor will I speak to anybody.

"I'm the coach of the Philadelphia Eagles. I'm going to prepare for the Bears (on Sunday). We're going to prepare for the Cowboys after that. Hopefully, we have an opportunity to go to the playoffs, and I plan to be here for a while."

ESPN reported that McCarthy's name was on the list of candidates compiled by Texas athletic director Steve Patterson.

McCarthy has an offseason home in the Austin, Texas, area, but he said he is not interested.

"I don't have a reaction (to the report)," McCarthy said. "Number one, the University of Texas ... Austin is a great city. My (oldest) daughter grew up there. But, I am proud to be a Green Bay Packer. It's an honor to hold this position. This is home for me. This is home for my family."

Tomlin also issued a denial of interest in Texas.

"I always had a desire to compete in this sport at the highest level," Tomlin said. "But you don't know if those opportunities are going to be presented to you. I think that once you're exposed to football at this level, you realize there's only one bowl game -- the Super Bowl. The rest of that stuff is nice trips and sweatsuits and watches."

Harbaugh wouldn't discuss the Longhorns' opening.

"Are you trying to be funny?" Harbaugh replied when asked last week about the Texas job. "I don't ever talk about any job other than the one I have."

Baylor coach Art Briles said little Monday when asked about the Texas job.

"I'm just getting my team ready for UCF," Briles told the Waco Tribune. The Bears play the Knights on Jan. 1 in the Fiesta Bowl.

Alabama coach Nick Saban was mentioned as a potential replacement, but he shot down the rumors that he might bolt for Texas when he announced Friday night that he's staying with the Crimson Tide after receiving an enhanced contract.
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