I tend to believe that as an Alabama blogger, a majority of what I talk about should involve Alabama. But, I can’t help but enjoy the drama that is the end of the year coaching carousel. I don’t enjoy it out of spite for other programs, I just like seeing drama and good stories come out as the old regime leaves, while the new regime arrives. Besides, the new SEC hires will affect Alabama in one way or another, so we might as well discuss it sometime.
Currently, there are two SEC positions open in Arkansas and Ole Miss. LSU could still open up, but it is sounding like Michigan is looking at Kirk Ferentz. Why? I don’t know, I personally think the guy is an middle of the road coach at best in Iowa.
First, the drama that the entire SEC has been watching with great interest is Arkansas. There have been rumored affairs, mean spirited e-mails, and text messages galore. Houston Nutt was supposedly offered 2.4 million to stay, but he was smart enough to realize that it would be a disaster for both sides if he stayed. Rumor has it that he is a candidate for Ole Miss or Georgia Tech. He’s also been mentioned for SMU and Baylor, although I think he would prefer Tech since he doesn’t have any reputation in the Atlanta region.
-UPDATE- It appears that Nutt is close to signing with Ole Miss for roughly $2 million per year. Say what you will about the guy, he is a solid coach that can have success at Ole Miss running the football. He’s known for big O-lines and brusing RBs, which would do wonders for the Rebels…. even if his recruiting is always lacking. This makes the paragraph following this update worthless.
Next we have Ole Miss, who fired Ed Orgeron after blowing a 14-0 lead against Mississippi State. I’m still personally shocked that State was able to score 17 points in one quarter. Anywho, most Rebel fans tend to think that they have enough talent for a coach to have decent success right away. While that could happen, I think that Ole Miss may have to suffer through a 5th straight year of rebuilding at least. Will Muschamp is being mentioned, but I wouldn’t be shocked if Rick Neuheisel got the job. He’s been mentioned for Alabama a few times, and certainly has friends in the right places in the South.
Am I the only one who thinks he looks a little like John Grisham?
Mr. Neuheisel is a heck of a coach, but has a very shady history with the NCAA. I know he ran them off by winning a court case against them, but the NCAA has been known to hold a grudge or two against coaches and programs. Still, I feel that he could get them winning 8 to 10 wins semi-consistently if he keeps his nose clean.
Other than that, there is Georgia Tech and Southern Miss that are of minor interest. I don’t know who Tech wants, although it is rumored to be Nutt. As for USM, I don’t know who they want either. I will miss Jeff Bower, the best coach in the state of Mississippi the past 15+ years. We’ll see where this ride takes us. Until then, just enjoy the news of Tuberville’s name being mentioned for Arkansas as he uses it for leverage to get $3 million a year.