Every couple of years, there is a young coordinator who does such a great job at a program that he becomes one of the hottest candidates for a head-coaching position. Auburn offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn is that guy right now.
He's known for running the no-huddle offense, and he does it to such perfection that many consider him to have one of the brightest minds in the sport. It's really only a matter of time before he becomes a head coach himself and runs his own team.
Here are a few potential places he could end up.
Malzahn and his high-flying offense would get Rebels fans excited again about football after they suffered through a couple of horrible seasons with Houston Nutt. Speaking of Nutt, Malzhan and him have history, as they worked together on the Arkansas team in 2006.
Somebody needs to come in and get this program back on the right track, as they've only made two bowl games since 2003.
Malzahn may be that guy.
This may be very unlikely, considering the scandal that this team is going through, but it has to remain a possibility. Right now, there is no bigger coaching vacancy open than the one at Penn State; under normal circumstances, this is one of the top jobs in the country.
If an offer was extended, Malzahn would at least have to think about it, because these jobs don't open up every day.
Tennessee has a very young but talented team, and if Derek Dooley can't get the job done soon, somebody else will. We've given him the benefit of the doubt for the last two seasons, but next year may be Dooley's last chance to improve.
If the Volunteers fail to compete again next season, he may be out of there.
This would give Malzahn the opportunity to stay in the SEC and coach a prestigious football program.
Imagine Malzahn and his no-huddle offense in the Pac-12. That would not only make the Sun Devils relevant and put fans in the seats, but it would also help draw some big-name recruits as well.
It seems like nobody wants to become the head coach of Arizona State, but it really wouldn't be a bad job for a first-time had coach. The Sun Devils have solid pieces in place and the conference is perfect for Malzahn's style of offense.
Randy Chambers is a B/R Featured Columnist that covers College Football and the NFL. You can contact him @Randy_Chambers or Randy.Chambers7@yahoo.com