The SEC had four jobs open at the end of this season: Arkansas, Auburn, Kentucky and Tennessee. Three of those job vacancies are filled, leaving Tennessee as the only program yet to hire a head coach.
Here are the updates from all the current programs, including assistants:
- Hogs hired former Wisconsin head coach Bret Bielema. He gave his introductory press conference yesterday in Fayetteville.
- It will be interesting to see the staff Bielema puts together, as no assistant’s names have surfaced yet.
- Auburn hired Arkansas State head coach Gus Malzahn. Malzahn was the one-time offensive coordinator and part of the Tigers’ 2010 national championship.
- Malzahn will not coach the bowl game for Arkansas State.
- Malzahn has hired former South Carolina defensive coordinator and last year’s Southern Miss head coach Ellis Johnson as his new defensive coordinator. That’s a fantastic hire.
- Malzahn also did not retain anyone from Gene Chizik’s old staff.
- Florida hired former Kentucky coach Joker Phillips as its wide receivers coach and recruiting coordinator. His job starts today.
- Former graduate assistant Bush Hamdan filled in this year at the position after Aubrey Hill abruptly resigned before the start of this season. Hamdan is figured to stay on the staff as a graduate assistant.
- Kentucky hired FSU defensive coordinator Mark Stoops.
- Stoops hired former FSU defensive ends coach DJ Eliot as his defensive coordinator at Kentucky.
- Three coaches Tennessee once pursued have now rejected the Vols: Jon Gruden, Charlie Strong and Mike Gundy.
- Strong was thought a shoo-in for the job, but he stayed where his heart ultimately belongs, in Louisville.
- UNC head coach Larry Fedora was thought to have interviewed, but he’s no longer in consideration, because he’s been rumored to turn the job down also.
- At this point, names like Butch Davis and Jim Tressel are becoming more popular.
- Many Tennessee fans would bring back former legendary coach Phillip Fulmer, because he would, at the minimum, not turn the job down.
- I would go get Jim Tressel. I know he comes with baggage and a sweater vest, but at this point, who else is available who would take the job?
- Reports are that Butch Jones, Tommy Tuberville and Bo Pelini could be next on the Vol’s radar.
Other coaching news:
- Former Auburn head coach Gene Chizik has been linked to the Florida State defensive coordinator position, vacated by Mark Stoops at Kentucky.
- Alabama offensive coordinator Doug Nussmeier and Georgia offensive coordinator Mike Bobo have been linked to the Southern Miss job opening.