All those Auburn fans holding their breath and thinking they were about to lose offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn can exhale. For now.
Malzahn, who was courted aggressively by Vanderbilt and offered a sweet financial package to be the Commodores' next head coach, has decided to stay.
It was a tough decision for Malzahn, who visited with Vanderbilt officials last week and was clearly their top target. They were serious about paying the kind of money that would have placed him in or near the upper echelon of the SEC in terms of total compensation. Vanderbilt wanted an offensive-minded coach, and Malzahn is one of the hottest commodities out there right now.
Auburn athletic director Jay Jacobs had already made it clear that the Tigers were committed to doing whatever they could to keep Malzahn, which means we'll probably see another assistant coach in the SEC approach the $1 million mark in salary and possibly even go over $1 million.
The reality, though, is that Malzahn isn't going to be an assistant coach for a whole lot longer. His phone's going to continue to ring, and at some point, the right opportunity for him is going to come along.
What's this all mean for Vanderbilt?
School officials will re-huddle, but Maryland offensive coordinator James Franklin would appear to be at the top of the list.