Should he stay or should he go?

Joseph Fuqua II/The Cincinnati Enquirer file photo

Butch Jones, despite swirling rumors that he accepted the head coaching position at the University of Colorado, said he hasn’t left the Cincinnati Bearcats. Jones called those reports “absolutely false.”

By Pat Graham
AP Sports Writer

BOULDER – Butch Jones said he hasn’t agreed to become the football coach at the University of Colorado.

In a text message to The Associated Press on Wednesday night, Jones called a report that he’s accepted the position “absolutely false.”

The University of Cincinnati coach has been weighing his options since meeting with athletic director Mike Bohn and other Colorado officials Monday.

Asked about the hiring, Bohn said in the text that “our process is not complete.”

The university later issued a statement saying, “We are still in the active process of hiring our next head football coach. We have nothing to confirm at this time, and no deal with anyone has been reached.”

Jones was Colorado’s top choice to replace Jon Embree, who was fired last week after going 4-21 in two seasons.

The 44-year-old Jones is 50-27 as a head coach, including 23-14 in three seasons at Cincinnati. The Bearcats (9-3) will play Duke (6-6) in the Belk Bowl on Dec. 27 in Charlotte, N.C.

Jones interviewed at Purdue on Sunday, then arrived in Boulder. The Boilermakers just hired Darrell Hazell as their new football coach after he led Kent State to its first winning season since 2001 and first bowl appearance in more than four decades.

The next coach to take the reins for the Buffaloes will be inheriting a squad that went 1-11 this season, the worst mark in the 123-year history of the program. The Buffs were 1-8 in the Pac-12.

Embree had three years remaining on the five-year contract he signed Dec. 6, 2010, when he replaced Dan Hawkins, whose poor recruiting classes and string of losing seasons led to his dismissal.

AP Sports Writer Larry Lage, Joe Kay and Arnie Stapleton contributed to this report.

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