Pressure has eased on Mississippi State coach Dan Mullen after the Kentucky win, but there is still tons of chatter. As we’ve mentioned previously, if they make a move, expect ULL’s Mark Hudspeth to get first call.
It’s no secret that their top target is Nick Saban. Other early names to watch include Art Briles, Jimbo Fisher, Charlie Strong and Jon Gruden.
Speaking of Gruden… This year could finally be the year he returns to coaching. However, the most likely landing spot may be his old stomping ground. There’s lots of chatter Gruden could return to the Raiders with full control over the front office.
Early names at Florida Atlantic include two first-year offensive coordinators with strong south Florida ties — Miami’s James Coley and Cincinnati’s Eddie Gran. Gran was a serious candidate when Carl Pelini was hired.
Expect staff changes at Appalachian State.
If a move is made to get rid if Dana Holgorsen at West Virginia, don’t be surprised if Rich Rod is a candidate to return home. It would definitely be interesting to watch the fan base’s reaction if that took place.
The Florida International job could open after just one year under Ron Turner.
There is major pressure building to oust Bo Pelini at Nebraska. He needs to win, badly. If he goes, former Husker quarterback and current Oregon offensive coordinator Scott Frost could be a candidate, although most think he needs a little more experience.
At USC, Jack Del Rio is still very much in the mix. Fresno State’s Tim DeRuyter is also getting some attention as a fall back option.
Most believe Pat Haden’s early targets will be bigger names and will likely have NFL experience.
At Toledo, second-year coach Matt Campbell has signed extension through the 2017 season.
Campbell was promoted from offensive coordinator when Tim Beckman took the job at Illinois. The Rockets are 14-7 under his watch, including a 5-3 record and 3-1 in the MAC this year.
There are lots of rumors that Boise State’s Chris Petersen may finally be ready to finally make a move.
Photo credit: Kerry Smith, AP