Bryan Harsin was named Auburn University’s 27th Head Football Coach at 6:33pm CST on December 22nd, 2020. Harsin is leaving his alma mater, Boise State, in which he accumulated a record of 69-19 and won three Mountain West Conference Championships during his seven seasons as the Bronco’s head coach.
Get To Know Bryan Harsin:
Bryan Harsin is a proven winner. Harsin began his coaching career as a running backs and wide receiver coach at Eastern Oregon. After just one season, Coach Harsin went back home to work his way up the ranks at Boise State including stents coaching tight ends, quarterbacks, and then offensive coordinator from 2006 - 2010. During his time as offensive coordinator at Boise State, the Broncos competed at a high level, including two Fiesta Bowl wins. Harsin then left Boise State to become the offensive coordinator at Texas for two seasons in 2011 and 2012. Harsin was then named head coach at Arkansas State in 2013, replacing Gus Malzahn who had left to become the head coach at Auburn. Harsin just spent one year at Arkansas State before coming home to Boise State as head coach to replace his former boss, Chris Petersen. During just his first year at Boise State, Harsin lead his team to a Mountain West Conference championship and a Fiesta Bowl win. During Harsin’s tenure in Boise, he only had one season that finished with less than ten wins (excluding the 2020 season in which Boise State only played seven games). That one season was 2015 and the Broncos finished 9-4 with a win in the Poinsettia bowl.
Here are The Patrick Party’s top two initial observations regarding Auburn’s recent program altering decisions:
An All New Offense Is Coming To Auburn.
Bryan Harsin knows offense. During his twenty year career, Harsin has coached every position on the offensive side of the ball, except the offensive line. Harsin’s offense, originating from his time under Chris Petersen, will certainly please the current wide receivers at Auburn. One way Auburn has been looking to improve from the Malzahn era, in regards to offense, is having a deadly air attack that scores lots and lots of points. It won’t take you long to find a championship contending team that has a high powered offense that lights it up through the air. Does Alabama or Florida ring a bell? Since taking the head coaching job at Boise State, each of Harsin’s starting quarterbacks have averaged 3,192 yards passing per season (excluding the seven game 2020 season). Harsin’s offenses also averaged 31.3 points per game during his seven year tenure. Harsin can bring that elite air attack to life at Auburn and the stats back it up.
Of course that doesn’t mean that Auburn won’t run the ball. Boise State has also had a thousand yard rusher every season under Bryan Harsin, excluding the shortened 2020 season. Having a thousand yard rusher at Auburn wouldn’t be anything new. Auburn had a thousand yard rusher each of Malzahn’s first five seasons at Auburn. It will certainly be interesting to see how Bryan Harsin uses Auburn’s already talented personnel on the offensive side of the ball to take the Tigers to the next level.
Recruiting In The South?
Soon after Auburn named Bryan Harsin head coach on Tuesday evening, questions arose about whether he could recruit in the south. Outside of one year in Arkansas and two years in Texas, Bryan Harsin has never had a coaching job in the southeast. It was a definite surprise that Auburn didn’t hire a coach with an “Auburn and/or SEC Connection”. This will be the first time since 1948 that Auburn has hired a head football coach that has not had any experience coaching in the SEC or the State of Alabama. It certainly won’t be an easy task recruiting against Nick Saban and Kirby Smart but, Bryan Harsin will look to not only continue Auburn’s Top 15 classes but, will also try to take Auburn’s recruiting game to the next level. Maybe Harsin will retain some members of the current staff to at least help him learn the recruiting territory. During his head coaching tenure at Boise State, the Broncos have averaged a 61 nationally ranked recruiting class. It is proven that Harsin can develop football players, but will he be able to bring in the top talent to Auburn.
It has become very clear that we are embarking on a new era in Auburn Football. As the Tigers begin to prepare for what will end up being an unusual Citrus Bowl, it will be very interesting to see the decisions Bryan Harsin makes has he begins to take on the Auburn football program. And once the clock hits zero in Orlando and the Tiger’s 2020 season comes to a close, it’s game on for Bryan Harsin.