Texas Coaching Rumors: Friday Hot Board


Since we last checked in on the Texas coaching hot board yesterday, there have been a few new developments:

- We've confirmed the report from yesterday that Gus Malzahn is officially out of the running. While we can't confirm the reasoning behind Malzahn's omission from the search, we heard last night that Malzahn has met with Auburn's athletic director and other administration members to clear up any rumors about him leaving this year.

- Texas likes Penn State's Bill O'Brien, but isn't planning to move for him because they believe he's set on the NFL.

- Louisville's Charlie Strong was an outside candidate in the week after Mack Brown announced his retirement, but has since indicated that he doesn't have much interest in the Texas job.

As things stand on Friday, here are the top five most likely candidates to replace Mack Brown at Texas:


5. Les Miles, LSU Head Coach

Miles can recruit, scheme, and evaluate talent with the best of them. His track record at LSU is consistently impressive, and he has several admirers on the search committee. While he isn't a top target for Texas at the moment, he's near the top of the second tier. Miles would have definite interest in the job.


4. James Franklin, Vanderbilt Head Coach

There's been a lot of chatter about Franklin in the past week, but Texas is aware that there's going to be competition for one of the best young coaches on the market. Turning Vanderbilt from SEC cannon fodder into a respectable program turned plenty of heads, and Franklin is getting attention from a number of major programs. He'd definitely listen if Texas came calling, but it may not be his top choice (Franklin, a Pennsylvania native, has reportedly reached out to Penn State about their potential vacancy if Bill O'Brien leaves for the NFL).


3. John Harbaugh, Baltimore Ravens Head Coach

Related: Exclusive - John Harbaugh is the #2 Choice for Texas

Harbaugh is the reach candidate Texas feels most confident about, but that all rests on whether or not the Ravens make the playoffs. If they do, Harbaugh won't be available in the timeframe Texas is looking for. If they don't, Texas will make Harbaugh an offer similar to what they were offering Nick Saban...and it won't be easily turned down.


2. Art Briles, Baylor Head Coach

Related: Texas Target Profile - Art Briles

Briles is the common sense pick. He's Texan, he's smart as a whip, and he can recruit Heisman-level players - even at Baylor. If Harbaugh (still a longshot) and Fisher (who's reportedly torn about leaving Florida State) don't pan out, Briles is the next name on the list, and based on the rumors coming out of Waco, we're confident that he'd say yes if asked.


1. Jimbo Fisher, FSU Head Coach

Related: Texas Target Profile - Jimbo Fisher

Texas is enamored with Fisher. His coaching pedigree is spotless (he was an assistant under Nick Saban, then Les Miles, then Bobby Bowden), and his results as a head coach are excellent (he's 44-10 since taking over in Tallahassee, with three straight bowl wins). Leaving Florida State won't be easy, especially with Jameis Winston returning next year, but Texas is confident that Fisher is willing to listen - for the right price. He won't respond to Texas overtures until after the national championship game on January 6th, but Texas will no doubt have an offer waiting.



Additional Reading:

Texas Fans Bought Mack Brown a Billboard on Highway 183

How Awful QB Recruiting Led to Mack Brown's Downfall At Texas

Back to the Texas Longhorns Newsfeed