Jags announce Del Rio is staying
Jack Del Rio will remain the coach of the Jacksonville Jaguars, the team announced Tuesday.
Jaguars owner Wayne Weaver made the announcement after meeting with Del Rio, following a report that Del Rio was offered a chance to return to his alma mater to coach at the University of Southern California.
"I feel good about our meeting," Weaver said at a news conference, according to the Jaguars' Web site. "I feel good that the team of [General Manager] Gene Smith and Jack Del Rio is going to take this franchise to an elite level."
Del Rio was retained by Weaver after a season in which the Jaguars lost their last four games to finish with a record of 7-9 and miss the playoffs.
In seven seasons as the Jaguars' coach, Del Rio has a record of 58-57, including 1-2 in the playoffs.
The Jaguars would have owed Del Rio approximately $15 million for the remainder of his contract if they'd fired him.
USC reportedly had offered its coaching job to Del Rio. The Los Angeles Daily News reported that school officials sent a contract offer Monday night to Del Rio, a former USC player.
Weaver said that was not discussed at his meeting Tuesday with Del Rio.
"I wasn't interested in that," Weaver said, according to the team's Web site. "I wanted to know if Jack wanted to be here and was committed to this franchise. My expectation is that this team will compete for the playoffs this year. There are things we have to do differently. We're just moving forward."
Del Rio told a Jacksonville television station, WJXT, on Tuesday morning, according to the station's Web site: "All of those things are manufactured. The only thing I can tell you is I've been busy working on the Jaguars for 2010. We're busy at work, trying to build this thing strong."
USC is searching for a replacement for Pete Carroll, its highly successful coach who was hired Monday by the Seattle Seahawks to replace the fired Jim Mora. Carroll won two collegiate national championships at the school.
There also have been reports that another NFL coach, the Tennessee Titans' Jeff Fisher, would be a candidate for the school, but it appears that Fisher is not interested and likely will remain with the Titans. Former NFL coach Herman Edwards also has been mentioned as a possibility.
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