Auburn head coach Bryan Harsin reacts to a play during the second half of an NCAA college football game against Arkansas, Saturday, Oct. 29, 2022, in Auburn, Ala. (AP Photo/Butch Dill)

Auburn fires Bryan Harsin

The coaching carousel in the SEC has begun: Auburn fired head coach Bryan Harsin, per a release from the school on Monday. Harsin leaves Auburn with a 9-12 career record in 1 1/2 seasons with the program. Four of those losses came in the last four weeks, including a 41-27 loss to Arkansas on Saturday.

Bryan Harsin: short tenure

Harsin arrived at Auburn after a 69-19 record in seven seasons at Boise State. He began his tenure with a fast 6-2 start, including wins over ranked Arkansas and Ole Miss in back-to-back weeks. Since then, the Tigers have lost eight of their last nine SEC games.

Auburn lost four-straight games, including a 24-22 loss in four overtimes to Alabama, to conclude the regular season. The Tigers finished the 2021 season with a 17-13 loss to Houston in the Birmingham Bowl.

The 2021 offseason wasn’t any easier for the program after the university launched an investigation into Harsin following the departure of multiple players and coaches, including offensive coordinator Mike Bobo, who was fired, and his replacement Austin Davis, who stepped down before ever coaching a game. The university eventually cleared Harsin of any wrongdoing.

In somewhat similar fashion, Auburn began the 2022 season with a 3-1 record, including a 17-14 win in overtime over Missouri, its first SEC win since Oct. 30, 2021. From there, disaster struck again.

For the second-straight season, the Tigers have lose four SEC games in a row.

Harsin leaves Auburn with the lowest win total of any non-interim head coach since Earl Brown, who had three wins from 1948-1950. It is also the shortest tenure of any non-interim head coach since Brown’s three seasons.

New Administration at Auburn

The decision to move on from Harsin was not necessarily a surprising one, not just because of his overall record. Additionally, there was a shift in administration at the university. Although university president Christopher P. Roberts made the decision to fire Harsin and interim athletics director Rich McGlynn, the final choice is ultimately “publicly responsible” and, Auburn is right in the middle of a major administrative hire.

Former AD Allen Greene, who hired Harsin following the 2020 season, resigned from his position eight days before the season began. Former Mississippi State AD John Cohen resigned from his position on Monday and is expected to be named Auburn’s next AD. Both are moves that contributes to the hiring-firing process.

What’s next for Auburn?

Auburn owes Bryan Harsin over $15 million with his buyout, over half of which is owed in the next 30 days, per ESPN’s Alex Scarborough.

The Tigers will be looking to find their 27th head coach in program history. Potential candidates already rumored to be targeted are Ole Miss head coach Lane Kiffin and Liberty head coach Hugh Freeze, who previously coached at Ole Miss from the 2012-2015.

Auburn has yet to name an interim head coach for the remainder of the season. The Tigers take the field on Saturday on the road against Mississippi State at 7:30 p.m.

About Cam Parker

Cam is a fourth-year broadcast journalism sports and media major at the University of Florida. In addition to writing and recording radio trendings for WRUF, Cam covers North Florida HS football for The Prep Zone and Mainstreet Daily News and UF football and basketball for Inside the Gators.

Check Also

Freeze Hired at Auburn

Auburn announced Hugh Freeze as the Tigers next head football coach. Athletic director John Cohen …