NCAAF: Auburn fires coach Bryan Harsin after 21 games

Auburn fired football coach Bryan Harsin on Monday after a tumultuous 21 games and a day before his 46th birthday.

The Tigers are in the throes of a four-game losing streak, losing the past three by a combined 60 points. Harsin is done after compiling a 9-12 record (4-9 Southeastern Conference).

“Auburn University has decided to make a change in the leadership of the Auburn University football program,” the school said in a one-paragraph statement. “President Christopher Roberts made the decision after a thorough review and evaluation of all aspects of the football program. 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.”

Running backs coach Carnell “Cadillac” Williams, a former All-American at the school, was announced as interim head coach for the remainder of the season.

The move comes the same day that Auburn is expected to announce the hiring of John Cohen as its new athletic director.

Harsin reportedly is owed more than $15 million on the remainder of his contract, half due in 30 days.

Auburn hired Harsin to replace Gus Malzahn after the 2020 season. Harsin compiled a 69-19 record as the head coach at Boise State from 2014-20.

However, he was subjected to an internal inquiry in February. Auburn looked into the reasons behind the departure of about 20 players to the transfer portal. Five assistant coaches also left the Tigers, who finished 6-7 in Harsin’s first season with the program in 2021.

Since then, however, Auburn president Jay Gogue retired in May and the school mutually parted ways with athletic director Allen Greene in August.

Williams, 40, played running back for the Tigers from 2001-04, helping the team go undefeated in his senior season. He is still the second-leading rusher in school history, with his 3,831 yards trailing only the 4,303 of Bo Jackson.

Williams played in the NFL for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2005-10) and the St. Louis Rams (2011), and he was selected AP Rookie of the Year in 2005 after rushing for 1,178 yards and six touchdowns in 14 games. He was in his fourth season as Auburn’s running backs coach.

Auburn travels to Mississippi State this week. The only wins for the Tigers (3-5, 1-4) this season were against Mercer, San Jose State and Missouri, all in September.

–Field Level Media

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