Arizona has four candidates to succeed McGinnis

Originally Published: December 30, 2003
By Len Pasquarelli | ESPN.com

Former New York Giants coach Jim Fassel is a man in demand.

Even before Fassel could officially add his name to the nation's unemployment rolls, ESPN.com has confirmed that he will interview with Arizona Cardinals officials this weekend about their head coaching vacancy.

That the Cardinals are interested in Fassel, who was Arizona's offensive coordinator in 1996 and very popular in the Valley of the Sun during his brief tenure there, is hardly surprising. His name quickly surfaced in Arizona when the Giants announced two weeks ago that Fassel would not be retained beyond the end of the 2003 season.

At the time, it was widely assumed that Cardinals coach Dave McGinnis would be fired. Management made it official Monday, and Fassel was contacted shortly after the Giants' concluded a 4-12 season Sunday with a loss to the Carolina Panthers.

Cardinals vice president Michael Bidwill also identified three other candidates for the job: former Minnesota Vikings coach and current ESPN analyst Dennis Green, New England defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel, and Philadelphia Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Johnson.

ESPN.com has learned that Green will interview with Cardinals officials on Wednesday.

Green will interview on Wednesday.

The Cardinals have received permission from the Eagles to speak to Johnson and will interview him sometime this week. It is not yet known if the Cardinals have set up an interview with Crennel, who already is a candidate for openings in Atlanta and with the Giants.

Fassel, 54, emphasized in his final Giants news conference that he hoped to be an NFL head coach in 2004, and the Cardinals probably won't be the only team interested in speaking to him.

In seven seasons in New York, Fassel was 60-56-1 and shepherded the team to the Super Bowl in 2000.

Len Pasquarelli is a senior writer for ESPN.com.

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