First, in order to understand this post, you have to understand my stream of consciousness:
1. Randy Edsall wants to play Penn State.
2. What if, by the time that happens, Miami coach Al Golden returns to coach his alma mater? (Edsall and Golden are playing against each other on Labor Day this year).
3. Would Golden really leave Miami to do that?
4. What's the better coaching job, Penn State or Miami?
Here's the thing: If Al Golden has success at Miami, he should be considered a legitimate candidate to replace Joe Paterno. Golden is a Paterno disciple, he loves the program, played there, and would be a good fit. BUT ... Miami is the better job for Al Golden.
Replacing a legendary coach like Paterno is a lose-lose situation, especially for a former player. You think expectations are high for Golden at a place with five national titles? Everything Golden would do at Penn State would be questioned, from every play he called to how he recruited and ran things off the field, to who he hired, what tie he wore on the sideline and whether or not he cuffed his pants. At Miami, Golden has a chance to make his mark on a different program, to make it his program.
There are few programs that can rival what Penn State has to offer coaches, from the ability to recruit to the potential to win big, and Miami is one of them. Golden should do whatever he can to stay there.