Bryan Harsin announces hiring of Derek Mason as Auburn DC
Former Vanderbilt head coach Derek Mason has been officially named Bryan Harsin’s defensive coordinator at Auburn, the program announced on Thursday.
“Auburn University is a special place with special people, and I’ve witnessed this in my time in the SEC,” Mason said in a school release. “I admire the school, the facilities, the traditions and the uniqueness of the community. Auburn has everything! Auburn embraces all that I believe in and I’m very appreciative of Coach Harsin, Director of Athletics Allen Greene, and the University Administration for this opportunity. I’ve always had a tremendous amount of respect for Coach Harsin and I’m excited to hit the ground running.”
Despite a 27-55 mark at Vandy, Mason was regarded as one of the country’s top defensive coordinators while at Stanford in the early 2010s. He began as the defensive backs coach before becoming associate head coach and co-defensive coordinator for the Cardinal in 2011, then took the DC reins on his own in 2012 and 2013. He was a Broyles Award finalist in 2012.
“I’ve always admired his ability to prepare his defenses and his approach with players on and off the field is outstanding,” Harsin said in a statement. “Having experience as a head coach in the Southeastern Conference is invaluable and he will bring a lot to our program. We’re fired up to have Coach Mason join the Auburn family.”
With the hiring of Mason, Harsin has filled both coordinator roles. Earlier on Thursday, the program announced that South Carolina offensive coordinator Mike Bobo had been hired to the same position at Auburn. Bobo was retained by incoming head coach Shane Beamer in Columbia but decided to instead join Harsin’s staff.