When Maryland takes on ECU in the Military Bowl Wednesday afternoon, it will mark the end of Ralph Friedgen's 10-year run as the Terrapins' head coach. Many reports have Mike Leach succeeding him in 2011, but that's far from definite and now a new candidate has emerged: Guz Malzahn, the offensive coordinator at Auburn.
Malzahn, just five years removed from coaching high school football, has served as Auburn's offensive coordinator the past two seasons. This year, the Tigers were sixth in the country with nearly 43 points per game, and next month they'e playing in the national championship game.
While Malzahn has not commented on the Maryland reports, Auburn's head coach has.
"To the best of my knowledge, there are possibilities of contact," Gene Chizik said. "I have not talked to anybody personally but there is a possibility of contact."
It certainly sounds like Chizik thinks his offensive coordinator is gone, and for good reason (beside the Under Armour connection that USA Today points out) -- with star quarterback Cam Newton likely headed for the NFL, this may be the perfect time for Malzahn to jump ship, too (especially with that pesky NCAA investigation still open).
Earlier this month Malzahn was linked to the Vanderbilt job but eventually opted to stay with Auburn as they prepare to face Oregon in the national championship game on Jan. 10.
June Jones, SMU's head coach, also apparently met with Maryland but has since pulled his name from consideration.