Where Smart Picks Go to Die
It has become painfully obvious that the Gene Chizik regime at Auburn is not working. While I don’t believe it is set in stone just yet that there will be a new head football coach on the plains next season, we are drawing very close to the point of no return. Auburn’s 41-20 loss to Ole Miss this past weekend didn’t do much to help Gene’s case. A few thoughts on that game:
This is what I believe: Gene Chizik has to win at least four games this year to keep his job. That means he basically has to win this weekend at Vanderbilt (the ‘Dores are an 8 point favorite, by the way. Painful). I highly doubt that Auburn would make any kind of a move during the season, but a loss next week (especially a bad one) would be awfully hard to swallow, and stranger things have happened at Auburn.
That said, on to the possible replacements (although this almost feels like rating potential mistresses). Rumors abound regarding Bobby Petrino. He’s not likely to get a better offer than Auburn this year, so I think there’s no question he would accept if Auburn offered. The fanbase is split along the lines of Republicans and Democrats when it comes to Bobby P, and I have to admit I have a lot of reservations about hiring him. I also have to admit that my reservations and how important I feel it is to have a “moral” football coach seem a lot less important now that Auburn is 1-5. As things move along I will certainly have more to say on Petrino.
Other early names seem to be Charlie Strong at Louisville and Jimbo Fisher at FSU. I think Charlie Strong is probably the best option of the bunch. He’s a great recruiter, defensive minded, and has good “morals”, whatever that means. Jimbo would be an okay option as well, although I’m still not convinced after seeing FSU stumble once again to a lesser team in NC State.
One thing is for sure: if a new coach comes in they will have plenty to work with. You can see flashes of the talent on this team even in the worst games. It is just painfully obvious that the coaching staff has no idea what to do with it…