Auburn has fired head soccer coach Gus Malzahn, the varsity introduced Sunday.
The choice comes lower than 24 hours after the Tigers completed the common season with a 6-Four document after beating Mississippi State 24-10 on Saturday.
“After evaluating the state of the Auburn soccer program, we have determined that it was time to make a change in management,” Auburn director of athletics Allen Greene mentioned in a press release. “We respect every thing that Gus did for this system during the last eight seasons. We are going to start a search instantly for a coach that may assist the Auburn program persistently compete on the highest degree.”
Sources instructed ESPN’s Chris Low that Malzahn was knowledgeable of his firing simply earlier than a crew assembly on Sunday.
Defensive coordinator Kevin Steele will take over as interim head coach.
Malzahn completed with a document of 68-34. He’s owed $21.7 million, 50% of which is due within the first 30 days.
This system reached the BCS Nationwide Championship in his first season in 2013 and competed in two different New Yr’s Six bowl video games.
Malzahn signed a seven-year extension price $49 million in Dec. 2017 — a season wherein Auburn gained 10 video games and appeared within the SEC championship recreation.
However Malzahn’s Tigers fell brief in subsequent seasons, ending fifth and third within the SEC West in 2018 and 2019, respectively.
The offense, specifically, stagnated lately.
Malzahn’s up-tempo assault, which he wrote a ebook about and have become well-known for popularizing as a coordinator after which as a head coach, slowed and regressed in some elements, as Auburn ranked seventh within the SEC in factors per recreation since 2018.
One other supply of consternation was Malzahn’s struggles towards prime groups within the SEC, as Auburn went a mixed 8-17 towards Alabama, Georgia and LSU.
What’s extra, Auburn was 20-24 towards groups that entered the sport with a successful document.
All that mentioned, Malzahn was one of many few coaches within the SEC who had any success towards Alabama’s Nick Saban. For the reason that begin of the 2013 season, Saban is 65-6 towards SEC opponents, and three of these losses have been to Malzahn.
“Coach Malzahn led the Auburn soccer program with honor and integrity,” Auburn president Jay Gogue mentioned in a press release. “We respect his service to Auburn Athletics, Auburn College and, specifically, our student-athletes. We want him and [wife] Kristi all one of the best.”
Candidates who is perhaps thought-about for the emptiness embody Steele, Indiana’s Tom Allen, Liberty’s Hugh Freeze, Oregon’s Mario Cristobal, Ole Miss’ Lane Kiffin, Louisiana’s Billy Napier, Alabama offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian, former Atlanta Falcons coach Dan Quinn and Clemson offensive coordinator Tony Elliott and defensive coordinator Brent Venables.
ESPN’s Mark Schlabach contributed to this report.