Over the years, Jamie Dixon's name has come up for a variety of coaching gigs. There was USC in the past. Heck, they even came up again last year. LSU once laughably came up. His alma mater, TCU, was bandied about as well. We've also had Maryland talk. There was Arizona State and Missouri.
It feels as if Dixon's name has come up for like ten percent of all of the D-I coaching jobs at one point or another. And given the sometimes awkward way he's tried to answer some of these questions, it was easy to see why there's been concern in the past from Pitt fans.
The Trib had one of their quirky brief response interviews with him recently. These types of things are mildly interesting, but hard to take all that seriously. In between talk of American Idol, something called Hawaii Life, and bionic ears, a couple of Dixon's answers stood out to me:
My favorite thing about Pittsburgh:
People would be surprised to know that:
My family has roots here in Pittsburgh. My grandfather moved here from Ireland in the 1920s, then married and moved to New York.
I think I remember hearing the latter thing first at some point. But Dixon's brief answer to his favorite thing about Pittsburgh is what caught my attention. When you add in his stated intentions to make the Pitt job his only job after he received his latest extension last year, it really speaks to how far we've come with the Dixon rumors.
In a nutshell, we've gone from mass panic and angst over his potential exit to the reality that barring something crazy, this is a life job for him. With all due respect to TCU, the prestigious alumni job isn't there for Dixon. In other words, this isn't a Roy Williams Kansas-North Carolina love triangle. And while UCLA would be an attractive job for someone wanting to get to the west coast, I'll never see him taking that job after Ben Howland did.
Jobs like USC and Arizona State would just be a significant step down unless Pitt's program starts coming off the tracks. The fact is that there are really few jobs that would make much sense.
You can never say never, but it's getting harder and harder to believe that Dixon could one day pack up his tent stakes and head somewhere else.