- Brian Bennett, ESPN Staff Writer
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Connecticut football coach Randy Edsall adamantly denied Thursday afternoon that he has been contacted about a possible job opening at Syracuse.
The New York Times reported on Wednesday that Syracuse athletic director Daryl Gross had hired search consultant Chuck Neinas and had already reached out to Edsall to gauge his interest about succeeding current coach Greg Robinson, who is 8-34 with the Orange. ESPN's Joe Schad is also reporting that Neinas had made overtures toward Edsall on Syracuse's behalf.
Gross denied the Times story to the Syracuse Post-Standard on Wednesday night and said he had not hired any search firms. Edsall opened his regular Thursday teleconference with Connecticut media by denying the reports.
"I don't deal in speculation and I just want you to know and everybody to know I haven't been contacted by any college, any university, the NFL, any person or people regarding and jobs," Edsall said. "End of story."
Edsall did not answer follow-up questions on the issue.
Syracuse's interest in Edsall would be natural if and when it decides to fire Robinson. He graduated from the school and earned a varsity letter as a quarterback, participating on the 1979 Independence Bowl team. He served as a Syracuse assistant from 1980 to 1990, rising from graduate assistant to eventually coach the running backs, tight ends and defensive backs during his tenure.
A successful defensive coordinator at Georgia Tech, he took his first head coaching job at Connecticut in 1999 and guided the Huskies through their transition to Division I-A. He has led the program to two bowl games and a share of last season's Big East regular-season championship.
Edsall signed a new contract in January that will pay him $1.3 million annually through 2013. And the Huskies have some of the best facilities in the Big East, including a new stadium and the multimillion-dollar Burton Family Football Complex.
Also on Thursday, Edsall said that quarterback Zach Frazer (head injury) would be a game-time decision Saturday against Cincinnati. If Frazer can't play, then redshirt freshman Cody Endres would get the start.
Brian Bennett covers college football for ESPN.com.
2dKevin Stone, ESPN.com