Glenn Carver of WREG, the CBS affiliate of Memphis, Tennessee, writes that Jimmy Haslam III’s connection to UT would provide added perks to a contract offer “already in hand.”
“The NFL is looking into the conflict of owning part of one team while getting money from another,” writes Carver. “If NFL ownership is included in Gruden’s deal, it would have to be tailored to conform with NCAA rules.”
Carver is the sports director for WREG. While Gruden has already publically denied any truth to this story, the Browns recently released the following statement:
“Jimmy Haslam has no involvement in the University of Tennessee head coaching search, and the report that Jon Gruden would potentially have an ownership stake in the Browns is completely erroneous.”
Gruden has had two stints as a head coach in the NFL, obtaining a Super Bowl win in 2002 with the Tampa Bay Bucaneers. A resident of Sandusky, Ohio, he has long been linked to the Browns through his ties with former President Mike Holmgren.