Auburn fires head football coach Bryan Harsin after 21 games

The guillotine finally dropped on Bryan Harsin.

After Harsin was the subject of job dismissal rumors dating back to last season, Auburn made the move on Monday and announced that they were moving on.

Harsin joined Auburn last season after seven seasons as the head coach at Boise State. With Harsin in charge, the Tigers went 9-12, including 4-9 in the SEC. Auburn has lost its last four games, and was outscored in the last three weeks — against Georgia, Ole Miss and Arkansas — by a total of 131-71.

The final straw was a 41-27 loss to unranked Arkansas at home on Saturday.

Harsin is owed $15 million in a buyout, half of which is due within 30 days, according to multiple reports.

“This after they paid $21.45M to buy out [Gus] Malzahn less than two years ago. Financial malpractice,” observed Stewart Mandel, the editor-in-chief of The Athletic’s college football vertical.

Bryan Harsin was fired by Auburn midway through his second season as head coach.
Bryan Harsin was fired by Auburn midway through his second season as head coach.
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College football has become increasingly cutthroat, and this is especially true in the SEC, where many fan bases — and their big-money donors — have extremely lofty standards. The second season is seen as a crucial barometer as to whether a coach is up to perform to these levels.

An interim head coach at Auburn was not immediately announced.

ESPN’s Pete Thamel expects Harsin to be in the mix for other jobs.

“Bryan Harsin could well re-enter college football in this coaching cycle,” Thamel tweeted. “His profile of success out West would immediately put him under consideration at Arizona State and Colorado. Even going 9-12 at Auburn, Harsin has won 70-percent of his career games in 10 seasons.”