With Miles out, Michigan continues coaching search

Updated: December 3, 2007, 2:20 AM ET
ESPN.com news services

ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- Michigan athletic director Bill Martin said Sunday night he did not directly contact LSU coach Les Miles about the coaching vacancy left by Lloyd Carr.

"We asked LSU for permission to talk to Les Miles last week and we were given permission to talk to Les but not until after the SEC championship game on Saturday," Martin said in a statement. "Les Miles was one of our candidates.

"I did not talk to Les Miles or his agent this past week in accordance with the wishes of [LSU athletic director] Skip Bertman and the LSU Athletic Department," Martin said. "This morning I did speak with Les' agent [George Bass] and he reaffirmed what Les said during his press conference yesterday -- that he was staying at LSU.

"We wish Les and the LSU Athletic Department the best of luck in the future," Martin said. "As for Michigan, we are continuing with the process we established and will continue to talk with and research our list of candidates."

Miles said after then-No. 7 LSU (No. 5 AP) beat No. 14 Tennessee 21-14 in the Southeastern Conference championship game Saturday that he planned to remain coach of the Tigers, who will play Ohio State in the BCS national championship game on Jan. 7 at the Superdome in New Orleans.

Miles turned down a chance to return to the school where he played and coached, telling his team earlier in the day that he would remain at LSU.

Speculation swirled all last week that Miles would leave LSU and return to Michigan. The Wolverines' job became vacant when Carr announced his retirement.

Miles was questioned about Michigan during his news conference Friday at the Georgia Dome. He had said he planned to talk to Wolverines officials after the SEC game. After the victory, Miles said he never spoke to Michigan and didn't plan to.

Martin has said he is looking for the next Carr, who led Michigan to the 1997 national championship and five Big Ten titles while keeping the school above even suspicions about NCAA violations.

ESPN's Joe Schad is reporting that Michigan defensive coordinator Ron English interviewed for the Arkansas job on Sunday, according to a person briefed on the meeting.

Martin has said he had 20 candidates in mind, and now he'll need them. Possible choices might include Rutgers coach Greg Schiano, Wake Forest coach Jim Grobe, California coach Jeff Tedford and Missouri coach Gary Pinkel.

LSU hired Miles away from Oklahoma State after Nick Saban departed in 2005 to coach the Miami Dolphins.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.