Tennessee no longer pursuing Schiano after protests

FILE- This Sept. 30, 2017 file photo shows former Rutgers football head coach, now Ohio State associate head coach/defensive coordinator Greg Schiano running onto the field before an NCAA college football game against Rutgers in Piscataway, N.J. (AP Photo/Mel Evans, file)

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A person familiar with the negotiations told The Associated Press that Tennessee is no longer pursuing Ohio State defensive coordinator Greg Schiano to be the school’s new head coach.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity because none of the negotiations were intended to be made public until a deal was reached.

The school and Schiano were close to an agreement earlier Sunday, but the school backed out after widespread backlash that included a protest on campus and complaints on social media from fans, state representatives and gubernatorial candidates.

Their complaints stemmed from Schiano’s background as an assistant at Penn State during Jerry Sandusky’s tenure as the Nittany Lions’ defensive coordinator. Sandusky is serving 30 to 60 years in prison for his conviction on 45 counts of sexual abuse.

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