Nate Oats Feb 4, 2023; Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA; Alabama Crimson Tide head coach Nate Oats looks on against the LSU Tigers during the first half at Pete Maravich Assembly Center. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Wevers-USA TODAY Sports

Since it was reported Sunday evening that the Arkansas Razorbacks were about to hire former Kentucky Wildcats head coach John Calipari, rumors have been flying as to who would replace him.

One name that kept coming up was Alabama Crimson Tide head coach Nate Oats. Oats, who just came off taking his team to the Final Four, the first in the school’s history, was the hot name circulating college basketball circles as potentially the next head coach of the Wildcats.

Even ESPN’s Paul Finebaum thought Oats might be a name to watch in the job search.

Finebaum said this about the situation Monday morning on a Birmingham, Alabama radio show about his thoughts on the situation.

“I think Nate Oats is the one on everyone’s list,” Paul Finebaum said. “I mean, the two best coaches in the country, in my opinion, are [Dan] Hurley and Nate Oats. One is playing for the national championship tonight. Listen, I’m not privy to Nate Oats’ exact contract, but what is it? Close to $20 million, or something like that?

Oats put all the rumors to rest Monday evening by announcing on social media that he will be staying in Tuscaloosa.

Many wondered whether  Oats would listen if Kentucky called. And apparently if they did, he’s not interested.

Oats has one of the top recruiting classes in the country coming in next season and he just signed a huge extension that made him one of the top-paid coaches in the game, not to mention his buyout is $18 million. So it certainly makes sense for him to stay in Tuscaloosa.

Scott Drew of Baylor has also been mentioned in rumors, along with Dan Hurley of UConn.

{Nate Oats, McElroy and Cubelic}

About Stacey Mickles

Stacey is a 1995 graduate of the University of Alabama who has previously worked for other publications such as Sportskeeda and Saturday Down South.