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Report: Louisiana Tech’s Michael White prime candidate for Tennessee vacancy

Apr 20, 2014, 12:58 AM EDT

Michael White AP

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With former head coach Cuonzo Martin now at California, Tennessee athletic director Dave Hart now has the task of finding the right man to lead the basketball program into the future. While the Volunteers did reach the Sweet 16 this past season, they’ll be moving on without some key contributors including forward Jarnell Stokes.

But its still an attractive job, and according to a report late Saturday from Gary Parrish of CBSSports.com, Louisiana Tech head coach Mike White is now the focus of the Tennessee head coaching search. White knows the SEC, having played at Ole Miss and then spending seven seasons at his alma mater as an assistant before being hired at Louisiana Tech.

However this development comes after Tennessee has, according to the report, run into some difficulties in its search.

A source told CBSSports.com that Tennessee has informally contacted some “A-list” candidates but that the interest hasn’t been mutual. Another source told CBSSports.com that at least one potential candidate expressed no interest only because Tennessee’s roster is in bad shape given that the Vols are losing four of their top five players from a Sweet 16 team.

White agreed to a six-year, $3.6 million contract extension on April 3, with the buyout increasing from $500,000 to $600,000. During his three seasons at Louisiana Tech, White has put together a record of 74-31 with 56 of those wins coming in the last two years.

After winning 27 games and a share of the WAC regular title in 2012-13, Louisiana Tech won 29 games and a share of the Conference USA regular season title in their inaugural season in the league.