The annual coaching carousel has begun. And here...we...go!
The Auburn edition. Gus Malzahn, he of former Auburn offensive fame, and the man with whom much of the credit for the 2010 National Championship should lay, is back in [insert city where Auburn University is located], this time as the head coach. Malzahn takes over for his former boss, Gene Chizik, who was let go after sucking hind tit since the 2010 championship. Malzahn's departure leaves a vacancy at Arkansas State. That has little to no effect on the Big Ten. However...
The Arkansas edition. Who saw this one coming? After firing John L. Smith, the Razorbacks wasted no time and went out and hired...Bert Bielema? Take it away, Orson:
That is as weird as it sounds in every respect: an SEC school grabbing a Big Ten coach with no experience in the conference relatively late in the hiring process just days after his team won a surprising Big Ten championship in an otherwise down year for their program.
So with Bielema headed to [seriously, what towns do these damn teams play in??], what does that mean in Madison? An early favorite is Paul Chryst, former coordinator who recently took his talents to Oakland to lead the Panthers to a 6-6 record and a berth in the Pamela's Diner - Shadyside Bowl. And what a glorious day it would be if Chryst did head back to Wisconsin? Not because a decent coordinator would be headed back to the Big Ten, but because that would give Pitt it's 13th coaching search in three years. Todd Graham is rumored to be the frontrunner.
Front Page News. In case you guys missed it, Matt McGloin, a former walk-on who famously walked on to the Penn State football team, only to become the first former walk-on to start for the Nittany Lions, won the Burlsworth Award, given to the best college football player who walked on to the team on which he was a former walk-on.
Fight the Power! Have a strong feeling about Big Ten expansion? Of course you do, you're reading a blog! Well worry no longer, eager mind. The conference's namesake television network is giving you an outlet for your emotions. Gerry DiNardo himself has promised to respond to every third letter, and the BTN assures everyone that these won't be automatically filtered to Stacy, the first-year intern from New York who is only there to impress her boyfriend, Derek Eater.
Trouble in Charlottesville. Mike London is a good coach, on that we can all agree. But his staff was recently shaken up when a few assistants were let go. Firing assistants isn't necessarily major news, except for the fact that this occurred two months ahead of Signing Day, and the fact that London's success and leeway currently rests on his ability to bring in good (for UVA standards) recruiting classes. Well, he has some work to do. Penn State coaches and current commits are already doin' work.
[Malcolm] Cook, a 6-foot-1, 200-pounder from Richmond, said Penn State has already pursued him about making a switch. Cook’s FUMA teammate is Christian Hackenberg, a five-star quarterback heading to PSU.
In fact, a member of the Nittany Lions’ staff was on Fork Union’s campus on Monday to talk to Cook just minutes after London visited with him.
"As soon as I got to the athletic center, I saw the (Penn State) quarterback coach down there," Cook said. "Him and Christian were right there. Once I turned the corner, they were there waiting on me. I was like, ‘Wow.’"
Etc. DigNittany looks at Kentucky, Penn State's opponent on Friday in the NCAA Championships...Notre Dame ranked ahead of Alabama, proving everyone at SBN is an idiot (except Nick)...Tarantino on ChristmOHSHITYES.