Vanderbilt University head football James Franklin is playing defense today after comments this week that he looks for assistant coaches based on how attractive their wives are, not on their experience.
Here's what he said on 104.5-FM "The Zone" in Nashville on Wednesday concerning his assistant coach hiring criteria.
"His wife, if she looks the part and she's a D-I recruit, then you've got a chance to get hired. That's part of the deal," Franklin said, according to CNN affiliate WSMV.
"There's a very strong correlation between having the confidence and going up and talking to a woman, and being quick on your feet and having some personality and confidence and being articulate, than it is walking into a high school and recruiting a kid and selling them."
University Vice Chancellor of Athletics David Williams threw a yellow flag on Franklin on Thursday, according to a report in The Tennessean.
"He clearly made a mistake. And clearly, what he said is not how he feels and not how we feel,ā Williams told the paper.
Williams quickly backtracked on Twitter.
"My foot doesn't taste good, I hope I did not offend any1, I love & respect," he tweeted. "Attempt at humor obviously fell a few yds short."
"If a man can convince the women of his dreams 2 marry him, he can probably do just about anything, that type of confidence along w/coaching skills is what I am looking 4.
"As a husband & father of 2 daughters I regret the way I conveyed my message!" he tweeted.
Williams told Franklin that kind of humor is not appreciated at the Southeastern Conference school.
āHe said he was really in a joking mode, if you like, and didnāt mean all of that. And I explained thatās a thing you donāt even joke about," The Tennessean quoted Williams as saying.
He stressed that spousal looks were not among the attributes Vanderbilt looks for in employees.
"Clearly his comments do not reflect the values and hiring practices of Vanderbilt University, Vanderbilt Athletics or Vanderbilt Football," Williams said in a statement on the school's website.
Vanderbilt had a record of 6 wins, 7 losses in 2011, his first season as head coach at the school.