AUBURN, Ala. (AP) — Auburn fired coach Bryan Harsin on Monday after lower than two seasons, ending a rocky tenure during which the proud program struggled to compete within the Southeastern Conference.
Harsin went 9-12 general and 3-5 this 12 months. Auburn has misplaced 4 straight video games whereas struggling in opposition to Power Five opponents, together with a 41-27 loss to Arkansas on Oct. 29 that proved the ultimate straw. Auburn will owe Harsin 70% of his remaining contract — greater than $15 million — and half of that should be paid inside 30 days.
“President (Chris) Roberts made the decision after a thorough review and evaluation of all aspects of the football program,” the college stated in a short assertion asserting the transfer.
“Auburn will begin an immediate search for a coach that will return the Auburn program to a place where it is consistently competing at the highest levels and representing the winning tradition that is Auburn football,” the assertion stated.
Auburn canceled its weekly soccer soccer information convention about 90 minutes earlier than Harsin was scheduled to talk. The college didn’t instantly title an interim coach. The Tigers play at Mississippi State on Saturday.
Harsin was employed away from Boise State in December 2020 and Auburn gave him a six-year, $31.5 million deal. He by no means got here near replicating his previous success or making the Tigers aggressive within the SEC, and he did not sustain with rivals Georgia and Alabama on the sector or on the recruiting path.
Those outcomes have been unacceptable to a program that gained a nationwide title in 2010 and performed for one more in 2013, when it gained the newest of its eight SEC championships.
Auburn has misplaced three straight bowl video games, together with the Birmingham Bowl in opposition to Houston underneath Harsin. That was Auburn’s fifth straight loss and the Tigers dropped to 6-7, their first dropping season since 2012.
The 45-year-old Harsin turns into the primary Auburn coach to finish his tenure with a dropping file since Earl Brown went 3-22-4 from 1948-50, not counting interim coaches. He went 3-10 after successful six of his first eight video games and gained 4 instances in 15 video games in opposition to Power Five opponents.
The Tigers struggled all through the season, with the usually dependable protection giving up 40-plus factors thrice whereas the offense by no means solved its personal issues.
The warmth on Harsin rose after a 41-12 loss to Penn State and didn’t cool off a lot after that. A listless 42-10 loss to No. 1 Georgia emphasised the expertise hole going through the Tigers, who subsequently fell to Mississippi and the Razorbacks.
Harsin stated after the loss in Athens that he focuses on the issues underneath his management however added that the enjoyment of teaching “never goes away.”
Auburn is tied with Texas A&M for final within the SEC West at 1-4. Much of Jordan-Hare Stadium had emptied out by the fourth quarter in opposition to Arkansas.
“Obviously from the outcome of the game, nobody’s going to feel what we did was good enough,” Harsin stated. “I think everyone is in there hurting, which we should be.”
Athletic director Allen Greene, who resigned in August with 5 months left on his preliminary five-year deal, made the out-of-the-box rent of a coach with no SEC background. Harsin had gone 69-19 in seven seasons at Boise State, his alma matter.
Harsin survived a college investigation into his program within the offseason that was initiated by then-President Jay Gogue following heavy turnover on his roster and training workers.
Three-year beginning quarterback Bo Nix left for Oregon, the place he has led the Ducks to a No. 8 rating and 7-1 begin. Defensive coordinator Derek Mason left for a similar job at Oklahoma State, and Harsin fired offensive coordinator Mike Bobo.
His first selection to exchange Bobo, Austin Davis, accepted the job after which modified his thoughts, citing private causes. Auburn wound up standing by Harsin — on the time.
With all that as a backdrop, Harsin struggled to usher in prime recruits. His 2023 class was ranked forward of solely Missouri and Vanderbilt within the SEC, in accordance with the 247Sports composite scores.
When spring opened, Harsin stated he wasn’t bitter.
“I’m a guy that wants to move forward, that wants to get better, that wants to keep moving,” he stated on the time.
One former participant had stated Harsin handled the crew “like dogs,” although others rose to Harsin’s protection. The investigation ended with Gogue decrying the “wild speculation” and misinformation within the “feeding frenzy” surrounding Harsin, whose contract ran by the 2026 season. He didn’t specify the character of that hypothesis.
Harsin’s tenure ended with Auburn owing one other enormous payout. Like his predecessor, Gus Malzahn, the quantity stays the identical even when Harsin accepts one other job. The college paid Malzahn, now the coach at UCF, $21.5 million after his firing.
Malzahn was fired after going 6-4 in 2020, however he didn’t have a dropping file in eight seasons. Gene Chizik, who gained the 2010 nationwide title, went 3-9 two years later and was fired.
One dropping season — and the sturdy risk of one other — was all it took for Harsin to lose his job.