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Khalil Tate, other Arizona players vouch for Marcel Yates to be next head coach

Arizona’s Heisman Hopeful knows who he wants as UA’s next head coach

NCAA Football: Arizona at Arizona State Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

If it were up to the players, Marcel Yates would be the next head football coach of the Arizona Wildcats.

Several players, including star quarterback Khalil Tate, have vouched for the UA defensive coordinator to replace Rich Rodriguez who was fired Tuesday amid sexual harassment allegations.

Here are some examples:

Arizona has already been connected to higher-profile coaches like ex-Texas A&M coach Kevin Sumlin and ex-LSU coach Les Miles, and it is unclear if Yates will actually be considered for the position.

Generally, hiring a head coach just to appease players is not good business. Arizona would be best suited to go through a thorough interview process with a variety of candidates to find the best match.

If that leads it to hire Yates, fine, but taking a shortcut in the process seems unwise when the fate of the program is at stake.

That said, keeping Yates around as defensive coordinator does seem like a good idea.

Not just because Arizona’s players clearly like him, but also because he has done a solid job since he arrived in Tucson prior to the 2016 season, and he can continue developing UA’s young, but promising, defense.

Plus, keeping Yates would likely prevent Arizona from losing some of its 2018 signees, who could request to be released from their National Letters of Intent because of the coaching change.

Follow Ryan Kelapire on Twitter at @RKelapire