Report: Two SEC defensive coordinators among the candidates at South Carolina
South Carolina is reportedly considering several candidates for its head coaching vacancy. Those candidates include a pair of SEC defensive coordinators.
According to USA Today, Auburn defensive coordinator Will Muschamp and Georgia defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt have both spoken to South Carolina athletic director Ray Tanner this week.
Muschamp was Florida’s head coach from 2011-14, going 28-21. Pruitt has never been a head coach.
USA Today reported that Alabama defensive coordinator Kirby Smart was the favorite for the job. But Georgia is reportedly planning to hire Smart, so South Carolina is looking at other candidates now.
The newspaper also reported that Tanner has given Smart a Wednesday deadline to let him know whether or not he wants the Gamecocks’ job, and that Smart is expected to let the deadline pass without accepting it.
USA Today also said the Gamecocks could be interested in Arizona coach Rich Rodriguez. Rodriguez has a 152-104-2 career record in 22 years as a head coach at Arizona, Michigan, West Virginia and Division II schools Glenville State and Salem.
South Carolina could be considering as many as six candidates for the job. Tanner has said he wants to have a new coach hired within the next two weeks.
The Gamecocks have been looking for their next head coach since Steve Spurrier resigned on Oct. 12. They went 3-9 this year under Spurrier and interim coach Shawn Elliott.
Tanner told The State that Spurrier helped the search by resigning in midseason instead of at the end of the year.
“The process has gone well by Coach (Steve) Spurrier resigning when he did,” Tanner said in a statement. “It has given us the opportunity to have dialogue well before the end of the season. We have been very thorough during the search and now there is a short list. We are working toward the goal of having a coach by the end of next week.”