According to a source with knowledge of the situation, Temple football coach Al Golden is a leading candidate to become the head coach at the University of Miami.

Miami was believed to have narrowed its options to Golden, Connecticut coach Randy Edsall, and Marc Trestman of the Canadian Football League's Montreal Alouettes. According to the source, Golden interviewed with Miami in New York early last week.

When Golden was approached at the Sheraton Hotel on Saturday before the Temple football banquet, and asked the about his involvement with the Hurricanes, he laughed and responded, "Oh yeah? Let me know the details when you get them."

After the brief encounter, a Temple athletic department spokesperson said Golden would not be doing interviews before or after the team banquet.

Golden, who signed a contract extension with Temple after last season that carries through 2014, is believed to have a buyout clause included in his new deal. How much Golden would have to pay Temple should he leave for another school before his contract expires is unknown.

The 41-year-old Golden, who talked to UCLA and Notre Dame after previous seasons, just completed his fifth year with the Owls. He has made a dormant Temple program that had won only 22 percent of its games over the previous 30 years relevant again.

After inheriting an Owls squad that went 0-11 in 2005, he has guided the team to a 17-5 record in its last 22 regular-season games. Temple went from 1-11 in Golden's first season to 4-8, 5-7 and 9-4. This fall, the Owls were favorites to win the Mid-American Conference championship, but after reaching 8-2, Temple dropped its last two games of the season.

The defeats cost the Owls a shot at the MAC title and a second straight postseason appearance in an 8-4 season. Last year, after giving Temple its first winning record since 1990, Golden took the Owls to the EagleBank Bowl in Washington. In Temple's first postseason appearance since 1979, UCLA took a 30-21 victory.

In addition to the on-the-field improvements, Golden oversaw the best academic turnaround since APR guidelines were introduced by the NCAA.

"We've been hearing things," said one Temple player who asked not to be identified. "I hope he doesn't leave. But he's got to do what's best for himself and his family. That's not being selfish. He's done a job here, and if there is something else out there for him, he should go for it."

Another player expressed confidence that Golden was staying.

"He's not going anywhere," the player said. "He's stuck. We're going undefeated next year, and he wants to be part of it."

Trestman, 54, was a Miami assistant from 1981 through 1984, and received his law degree from the school. Former Hurricanes quarterback Bernie Kosar, who was coached by Trestman when the team won the national championship in 1983, is on the Miami board of trustees.

Edsall, 52, has coached UConn for 12 years, and this season led the Huskies to an 8-4 record and a berth in the Fiesta Bowl. He was named coach of the year in the Big East Conference after getting Connecticut to its first-ever BCS bowl.

Temple athletic director Bill Bradshaw was asked if Golden will be Temple's football coach next season.

"I have no reason to believe he won't" Bradshaw said. "When we first hired Al, I said he would be such a good coach that he would be coveted, and he has been every year. This year is no exception."

Contact staff writer Kevin Tatum at 215-854-2583 or ktatum@phillynews.com.