A national report has Kentucky wide receivers coach Chad Scott leaving Kentucky to go to North Carolina again.
The former running backs coach, who was set to take over the wide receivers next season, also left the Cats for the Tar Heels when he was a player.
The national coaching carousel website Football Scoop has Scott headed to UNC to join Larry Fedora’s staff there as tight ends coach. A spokesman said UK cannot confirm the report.
Scott has been the Cats’ running backs coach since Mark Stoops took over three seasons ago. He recently was asked to move to wide receivers coach with the hiring of new offensive coordinators Eddie Gran, who specializes in running backs, and Darin Hinshaw.
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They are UK’s third offensive leaders in the past three seasons. The only remaining offensive staff members are recruiting coordinator/tight ends coach Vince Marrow and offensive line coach John Schlarman.
As recently as Jan. 7, Scott told the Herald-Leader he was excited for the chance to work with Gran and Hinshaw.
“I’ll be a sponge, like I’m one of my receivers soaking up all of the coaching and teaching that Coach Hinshaw and Coach Gran will do with the offense themselves,” he said.
The idea of a position switch seemed appealing to Scott, who has offensive-coordinator aspirations. He seemed eager to coach a position that he’d never coached previously and one he initially was hired to coach at UK when Neal Brown was Stoops’ first offensive coordinator.
“It comes at a good time in my career coaching another position,” said Scott, who was a graduate assistant and video analyst at North Carolina in 2006 before working at Troy and then Texas Tech with Brown.
“It helps me basically become a complete coach, and I think it’s a normal progression for me in terms of my development as a coach.”
There shouldn’t be any short-term recruiting losses with Scott’s departure. He wasn’t the primary recruiter for any of UK’s 24 commitments in the class of 2016.
He was the primary recruiter for 2017 commitment DeMarco Artis and was involved in the recruitment of quarterback Mac Jones, who has committed to the Cats for 2017.
Scott has had success recruiting in Florida, and he has brought several talented players to Lexington over the past three years.
Scott was credited as the primary recruiter for Jeff Badet, Javess Blue, Jojo Kemp, Nico Firios, Ryan Flannigan, Garrett Johnson, Derrick Baity, Sihiem King and Marcus Walker.
The primary recruiting areas for Scott seem to overlap somewhat with Hinshaw, who also has recruited those areas for a long time.
When asked last week what his primary recruiting areas would be, Hinshaw said: “Where I’m born and raised is southwest Florida. I’ll have a big chunk of that. My whole family lives in Orlando. Coach Scott is still recruiting Orlando, but I’ll have some on the east coast of Florida also. I’ll kind of go across that south, southwest kind of quadrant of Florida.
“And I’ll recruit all the quarterbacks in the country, and there’s a lot of great ones out there right now. Then I’ll have some other areas that we’ll talk about after I get back off the road.”
The obvious move for Gran and Hinshaw would be hiring Blake Rolan, who had coached with them at Cincinnati since 2013. He was the quality-control intern at Tennessee when Hinshaw coached wide receivers there.
Rolan, a Georgia native who played for Hinshaw at Middle Tennessee State from 2000 to 2003, has Kentucky ties. The former tight end graduated from Louisville in 2005. His first coaching job was as assistant head coach and offensive coordinator at Kentucky Country Day.
At Cincinnati, Rolan made $145,000 for the 2015 season season. UK’s outgoing wide receivers coach Tommy Mainord made $275,000 last season, as did Scott.
Scott would replace Seth Littrell, who left North Carolina to become head coach at North Texas and recently hired Mainord to be the Mean Green’s inside receivers coach. Littrell made a reported $251,000 last season with the Tar Heels, which is $24,000 less than Scott made at Kentucky.