Bryan Harsin’s Auburn Heartburn
Former Boise State Football Coach Bryan Harsin is slowly becoming acquainted with how demanding, unforgiving, and passionate the fans of the South Eastern Conference are when it comes to wins and losses.
The Auburn coach is the subject of massive criticism over his team squeaking out a win against Georgia State at home. When asked how the coach would determine who would be the starting quarterback for this week's showdown against SEC West Power LSU, the coach bristled at the media. You can see his reaction below.
Harsin fired Cornelius Williams, the wide receivers coach, blaming him for the lack of productivity from the team's wide receivers. Williams was fired only four games into the season. The removal of Williams, along with the embarrassing effort, has led many of the Auburn faithful to question Harsin's ability to lead the Tigers to the College Football Playoff.
The Auburn coach may or may not realize that firing the popular Williams will come back to haunt him in recruiting players and coaches to his program. Williams is a local product who played at the nationally known high school Hoover. The team is so popular that MTV produced a reality series called two days.
Not only is Williams tied to Hoover, but he played at one of the most respected Alabama programs outside of Alabama and Auburn, Troy University. Troy is one of the elite programs in the group of five programs. He has also worked at UAB, which is another rising program in the state.
Harsin's quick move against Williams will alienate him from those coaches and recruits within the state. They do not like an outsider coming in disrespecting one of their own. Hoover's former coach was the subject of an ESPN documentary involving his rise and fall. The program has produced a number of college athletes and coaches.
Connor O'Gara gives us the local perspective of the Harsin Era so far in his recent article 'Bryan Harsin is having a 'welcome to the SEC' week, and not necessarily in a good way' from Saturday Down South. It's a great insight into how demanding life is for an SEC Coach. Literally one minute you go from hero to zero in the SEC. Here's one gem from O'Gara's article.
Bryan Harsin, welcome to the SEC. It is equal parts ruthless and diabolical. One Saturday can send your entire world out of orbit. Life changes faster than you can say “War Eagle.”
Former Auburn Coach Tony Franklin took to his podcast and Twitter to share his views on the firing of Williams. Franklin knows all about getting the boot during the season. It happened to him while he was the offensive coordinator at Auburn in 2008.
Mark Heim reviews the Franklin podcast on AL.com. Franklin holds nothing back in describing the behavior of the first year Auburn coach.
“If you want to blame somebody for sucking right now, the way your football team sucks, I got a great idea. Instead of firing Cornelius, or whoever the next guy is you’re going to fire, just quit. Just resign.”
The motto for the SEC is 'it just means more.' A more accurrate motto would be that of the Paul Finebaum Show when it was based in Birmingham, Alabama. "Where legends are made and most college football coaches fired." It will be interesting to see which one will describe Bryan Harsin.