Malzahn to Texas? Will Auburn coach be one and done?

Gus Malzahn should leave Auburn after this year, if the Texas job comes open, writes Sports Illustrated's Pete Thamel. (Getty)

Gus Malzahn should leave Auburn after this year, if the Texas job comes open, writes Sports Illustrated's Pete Thamel. (Getty)

Gus Malzahn has done a great job in his first year at Auburn.

He’s revamped the program, taking a team that was 3-9 and 0-8 in the SEC to 11-1 and a shot at not only the SEC title, but also the national championship.

Malzahn has been a hotshot high school coach.

He’s been a hotshot assistant.

And now the hotshot head coach should bolt Auburn while he’s at his hottest, for the riches of Texas, should that job come open, Sports Illustrated writer Pete Thamel writes.

Thamel states that other Auburn coaches — Terry Bowden (11-0 in 1993), Tommy Tuberville (13-0 in 2004) and Gene Chizik (14-0 in 2010) — have had undefeated seasons at the school, only to later lose their jobs when boosters grew tired of them.

In the 14-team SEC, Auburn will never be better than the fifth-best job, as Alabama, Florida, Georgia and LSU are widely considered a notch above the Tigers’ position. So if Malzahn gets a chance to go to the Longhorns, he should jump at the opportunity. That’s in part because of the boundless potential in Texas, where recruiting talent is flush and national championship expectations are realistic. (Think the Texas high school coaches wouldn’t all love Malzahn?)

We have to stop here and point out that Mack Brown is still the coach at Texas. The Longhorns (8-3, 7-1 Big 12) have won seven of their past eight after losing two of their first three and could still win the conference title.

Who could have guessed this summer that Malzahn may be more likely to go to Texas than Nick Saban? Meanwhile, Alabama is having a season that includes an uncharacteristic number of off-field issues.
University of Texas’ regents have made it clear that Saban is their top target, but there’s little optimism in Austin that he’ll jump. While Alabama’s presumed absence from the national title game increases the slim possibility of Saban leaving — it eliminates the awkward timing element if he’s playing for a BCS championship — it’s hard to envision that happening.

Thamel says Malzahn shouldn’t spend his “prime coaching years” chasing Saban.

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45 comments Add your comment

Spanky

December 3rd, 2013
4:48 pm

Yes, by all means, please venture west!!

WetWillie

December 3rd, 2013
4:53 pm

Gus or Jimbo will get a good gig and nobody can blame them for taking the Longhorn job. Nick would have taken the challenge but like he said at 62 that next big thing over the hill does’t matter anymore.

ARdawg

December 3rd, 2013
5:11 pm

Willie
I like Saban. I always have. You should know by now he is no different from other coaches that deny, deny, deny until they show up at another team. Saban has a longer history at it than most. When they say it isn’t about the money or, about this or that, it is all about the money and this or that. And, who can blame them? Saban may truly love being a Bammer but, that can can overnight. Don’t delude yourself.

ARdawg

December 3rd, 2013
5:12 pm

Joe Pa was demn near 90 when he got forced out and Bobby Bowden wasn’t far from it. I expect Saban will be the same way

mulk

December 3rd, 2013
5:13 pm

And here I thought that there was no school that a SEC coach would rather be than at a SEC school.

GM

December 3rd, 2013
6:08 pm

If any decent job is available anywhere other than at Auburn, he would be wise to go after it. The trick pony show returned and caught many offguard again this season. Next year it will be back to reality after the proper adjustments are made again by next season opponents. Just like after the 2010 season.

Spanky

December 3rd, 2013
6:10 pm

Mulk, it’s true with Texas as an exception…instead of the longhorn head on the helmet, they should have a dollar sign!!

PaulinNH

December 3rd, 2013
6:55 pm

Malzahn going to Texas and the source is Pete Thamel??? I wouldn’t describe him as a reliable source.

This is the same guy who wrote a puff piece in SI on Manti Te’o and how his girlfriend had been killed.

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1206734/index.htm

http://media.trb.com/media/acrobat/2012-09/84115860-26115823.pdf

PaulinNH

December 3rd, 2013
6:55 pm

Malzahn going to Texas and the source is Pete Thamel??? I wouldn’t describe him as a reliable source.

This is the same guy who wrote a puff piece in SI on Manti Te’o and how his girlfriend had been killed.

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1206734/index.ht

LaBubba

December 3rd, 2013
6:58 pm

who is the next clepto in line to qb auburn

LaBubba

December 3rd, 2013
7:00 pm

klepto sorry im from bama

Stephen

December 3rd, 2013
7:02 pm

Auburn had a better coach than Alabama, LSU and Georgia from 1982 – 2006. Why can’t Auburn be a better job than these now? It was a better job for a long period of time and will be again. Auburn has won 2 SEC titles and a NC and is playing for another SECC and potentially a NC this year. Remind me again why Georgia is a better job?

skydawg

December 3rd, 2013
7:22 pm

Georgia is a better job because the alumni aren’t notoriously finicky like the Auburn grads are. No one from our generation, including coaches, will ever forget the university airplane being sent to ‘visit’ Petrino. That sort of thing gives any employee pause. “If it happened to him, it can happen to me.”

Lowder laid a long-term screwing on Auburn with that one.

Mooshy

December 3rd, 2013
7:54 pm

Stephen – it’s not which school has accomplished more, it’s what school is the better job.

Auburn will always be known as the second best school in its own state, with the exception of a few years here and there. The boosters are notorious meddlers ( lowder and rayne) and is perceived by most as a “dirty” program based on its history. The talent in Alabama is good but def a notch below ga, tx, fl and ca. And the academics are a step down too.

Is that enough reasons why it’s not the top tier job in sec?

HotDawg

December 3rd, 2013
9:09 pm

That actually wouldn’t be a bad fit if texas doesn’t get saban.
Texas just better not lowball offer to malzahn much from a saban salary offer.
Texas absolutely has to make an offer they know auburn can’t match.

HotDawg

December 3rd, 2013
9:15 pm

Auburn had better than stallings at bama. And saban at lsu? Really stephen?

WeRunTheEast

December 3rd, 2013
9:16 pm

Stephen- UGA is a better job because this is an Atlanta newspaper, see. Also, no one would try to hire the best coach at the best program (excuse me while I chuckle, haha) to go to a dump like Texas. See, Texas is a major upgrade over Auburn, but a big downgrade for a UGA coach. Glad I was able to clarify.

WeRunTheEast

December 3rd, 2013
9:19 pm

And auburn requires you perform. At UGA, no such requirement. Continuity, very important. Winning, not so much.

HotDawg

December 3rd, 2013
9:21 pm

He’ll probably have no problem getting served at a waffle house in texas. If they have them there.

HotDawg

December 3rd, 2013
9:24 pm

Weruntheast, who said ga was better job than tx?
Which school do you exactly root for troll?

Rick James

December 3rd, 2013
9:26 pm

@WeRunTheEast

“And auburn requires you perform. At UGA, no such requirement. Continuity, very important. Winning, not so much”

Too bad Mark Richt’s preformance is not as good at Paul Johnson’s..Maybe Johnson is the answer at Texas if the job opens or if Auburn needs a replacement I’m sure he’ll be high on their list..

HotDawg

December 3rd, 2013
9:32 pm

His school hasn’t run the east in at least 3 years

HotDawg

December 3rd, 2013
9:38 pm

Weruntheeast….the articles comments and opinion is mostly from a Sports Illustrated writer. So your “atlanta newspaper” sarcasm made no sense.

HotDawg

December 3rd, 2013
10:06 pm

Everbody should be looking for ways out of that cow pasture state, known as alabama.

Auburn Smiler

December 3rd, 2013
10:23 pm

That is a dream of all SEC coaches. Who would want to coach against him, BUT he is not going anywhere, guaranteed! He LOVES AUBURN.

skydawg

December 3rd, 2013
10:36 pm

I hope he stays at Auburn (much like I do with Moobs down at tech). Malzahn reminds me of Hal Mumme with an offense full of smoke and mirrors. Two fluke plays that you’ll never see again and you’re drinking the Kool-Aid.

Suits me.

Veteran Fan

December 3rd, 2013
10:47 pm

The new rumor tonight is that Mark Richt has concluded a deal with the Longhorns and will become the highest paid coach in the country! He supposedly is upset with McGarity because the AD felt his announcement of retention of his coaches (Grantham)was premature as they had not spoken and analyzed the season and evaluated the staff! Texas is one of the top 5 jobs especially with their recruiting pipeline in state! Coach Richt is losing one recruit after another to Auburn and a few more on the edge if Auburn goes to the BCS championship game for the second time in a few years! The players see Auburn as a program on the rise and Georgia in decline! Add how Coach Saban can get any player he wants in Georgia and Richt has seen the handwriting on the wall!

WeRunTheEast

December 4th, 2013
7:19 am

I pull for the team that wins the East or beats (make that destroy in 2012) the East champ every year. We have had 2 straight HOF coaches. For most of 100 yrs this program was gum on UGA’s shoe, but for the last few years we have reversed the gum and shoe thing with UGA. My team will have your team filling their silver britches in the first SEC game in 2014.

gboben

December 4th, 2013
8:41 am

Skydawg & Hotdawg………Spewing typical UGA BS……ours is the better job, the better team, we win more championships, blah, blah, blah. Never let the facts get in the way of your delusions, bullfrawg fans. UGA has been a no-show on the SEC and national championship scene since 1980 with a couple of accidental SEC championships before or after Spurrier, Meyers, Saban, and Miles. And that will continue for the next 33 years as well.

Harvey

December 4th, 2013
9:10 am

Just something made up by neophyte journalists to fill empty newspaper space. Texas still HAS a coach and if they have a brain, they will continue to have same coach for few more seasons. All this gossip about Auburn coaching turnover is simply uga journalism folks’ wishful thinking to be rid of him.

War Tiger

December 4th, 2013
9:21 am

Not gonna happen. There’s a better chance that Saban will be the next Longhorn coach.

RS Dawg

December 4th, 2013
10:02 am

Does anyone think that CGM looks like Elias on Person of Interest?

UGA Insider

December 4th, 2013
10:31 am

Also, hearing the same thing as Veteran Fan. Mcgarity and CMR not getting along well at all. I could see CMR heading to Texas where he would do great out there. The Kirby Smart era may start sooner than I expected. I anticipate that Smart will do everything he can to keep Bobo and some others.

Big changes could be brewing at UGA.

[...] seasons at the school, only to later lose their jobs when boosters grew tired of them. Read more on Atlanta Journal Constitution (blog) College Football: USC-Sarkisian Coach College Football Latest News « College [...]

JB

December 4th, 2013
12:20 pm

Head to Athens. lifetime deal for 8 wins and a mid tier bowl, just like an ACC school. Go Dawgs

JB

December 4th, 2013
12:23 pm

Insider…….nothing is brewing in Athens. Nobody in charge really cares that much. Really, they don’t. I often think of Maryland……MARYLAND firing the fat guy from Tech who was ACC coach of the year the year they fired him for not winning enough. MARYLAND.

JB

December 4th, 2013
12:24 pm

Ralph Frigen ( sp?)

JB

December 4th, 2013
12:28 pm

One reason Auburn is a pretty good job…..They have a win at any and all cost attitude down there. See Cam Newton and Nick Marshall. Both caught stealing and both welcome to the Barn.

Bryan

December 4th, 2013
4:00 pm

This story is starting to go viral. Sounds to me like the in-state competition doesn’t want ole’ Gus to hang around very long. He wants his sand box back.

lee

December 4th, 2013
5:31 pm

Gus is from Texas and said his dream job is to coach the Longhorns! Don’t be surprised if the job becomes available if he takes it. Gus and Nick have the same agent.

Hmmmmm

December 4th, 2013
5:49 pm

Ha. Love the troll coments on this one. Richt to TX. Giggle.

Mack Brown still has the job the last I checked. These rumors will be even funnier after TX wins the Big 12.

Nick Saban

December 4th, 2013
10:51 pm

that gasden purchase though?

Jingles

December 4th, 2013
11:53 pm

I love blogs! They are funnier than the Sunday comics!

Pookie

December 5th, 2013
11:22 am

Someone please tell Malzahn to stop wearing them sweater vests, not a good look for him!

Ted Burnett

December 8th, 2013
6:06 pm

Georgia, Florida and LSU better programs than Auburn? Who played for the 2010 national championship, who’s playing this year? The state of Alabama has a meager population of just 4 million to support two big SEC programs, while Atlanta, GA metro alone has a population of 4 million (Tech is no rival to UGA), the state of Florida has 17 million people for their schools to draw from while LSU has no interstate rival. These writers wished for Notre Dame to be in last year’s game with Alabama and they got it. They wanted Ohio State this year, but they choked, just like Notre Dame! How ridiculous.