ESPN broadcaster, and former head coach Jon Gruden watches warmups before an NFL preseason football game between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Washington Redskins Thursday, Aug. 31, 2017, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)
Ever since Tennessee fired coach Butch Jones on Sunday, the No. 1 subject around town has been whether the Volunteers could get former Tampa Buccaneers and Oakland Raiders coach Jon Gruden to replace him.
The so-called “Grumors” reached a new level Saturday during Tennessee’s game with LSU, thanks in part to a local restaurant chain.
With Peyton Manning in town for a reunion of Tennessee’s 1997 Southeastern Conference championship team, rumors circulated on social media that the former Vols quarterback had been spotted eating with Gruden at Calhoun’s.
The Calhoun’s Twitter account played a role in that by retweeting numerous posts about the possibility that Gruden was in town. Gruden currently works as the color commentator for ESPN’s “Monday Night Football,” which is airing from Seattle on Monday.
Take a guess who is @calhouns on the river with Peyton?
— bart fricks (@BCFricks) November 18, 2017
The real question is if Gruden loves @calhouns as much as I do....
— Aylor Evans (@AylorEvans) November 18, 2017
Then came the backtracking, as Calhoun’s issued a tweet saying “a staff member notified us that they weren’t so sure it was him.” Calhoun’s added that “we apologize for the misunderstanding” and that “it was never our intention to spread rumors.”
We’d like to take a moment to clear things up as well as apologize. We got excited- like everyone. Please read: pic.twitter.com/AIyVvmppKC
— Calhoun's (@calhouns) November 19, 2017