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COACHING CAROUSEL: DARK HORSES GALORE

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The latest in the folderol race to establish who's going to be coach and who won't where:

A strange flight from Tempe to Pyongyang? Rumors of the baddest man between the Yalu River and the 38th parallel--or at least the roneriest man jacked up on cognac and uppers between the two--coming to Tempe to beef up the perpetually sanctioned Arizona State defense?

Per flightpath traffic records yesterday, a most curious flight left Tempe yesterday.

Only one coaching prospect lives in the downtown Pyongyang area: Kim Jong-Il, a leader noted for his defense and ability to leave supporters starving for more. As odd as the idea may seem to outsiders, NFL and college insiders say the Dear Leader has long been on the wish lists of both ADs and NFL owners for a head slot.

"We almost had him back in '86," said Raiders owner Al Davis from his home on Tuesday. "Everyone says he's all defense, but let me tell you this:

why do you think they built the DMZ? When that guy says he's gonna throw the bomb, people listen." Davis says the negotiations fell through when Davis refused to bankroll longtime Kim crony King Sihanouk of Cambodia's frozen yogurt business. "It was an oversaturated market, and I'm not the bank of Al, here, so I told him to buzz off. Plus that stuff's gritty."

One area Kim would also bring strength in is dealing with regulators. "The NCAA is nothing compared to the IAEA," says longtime Korea-watcher Dr. John Endicott of Georgia Tech. "He's used both brutal and clever moves to evade them for years. My guess is that Kim would handle them quite well, as well as build up Alabama's nuclear program."

Insiders say this is evidenced by this bit of footage found on Youtube, which allegedly shows Kim's methods for dealing with regulatory inquiry. "The Alabama boosters got very excited when they saw his strategic decisiveness," says one source. "If this is typical, then he'll be the second coming of Nick Saban. Almost."

Also rumored to be in the hunt is the University of Alabama, though an industry insider denies it. "Mal Moore contacted Kim, but he said no. Now they're scrambling for a replacement after both he and Equatoguinean strongman Obiang turned down the gig. Their only hope now is going after Putin, but his agent is totally strongarming them, and I don't think Moore or anyone else wants to eat a meal of Polonium-210 anytime soon."

Mal Moore, Paul Finebaum, and White House Press Secretary Tony Snow declined to comment on this report.