Former Auburn football coach Bryan Harsin had his say one day following his firing on Monday after less than two seasons on the job with a record of 9-12 overall and 4-9 in the SEC.
Harsin pointed out what many people have long believed holds Auburn back from being a better program.
“I truly believe Auburn has the potential to be a championship program once again,” Harsin said in a statement. “The resources, financial support and fan base are in place. There are good people throughout this program and university.”
Then came the clincher.
“With complete alignment, the possibilities are endless,” Harsin said.
He is obviously saying Auburn lacked complete alignment in its administration and with its various money people outside the program. And the truth is Auburn has had a tendency throughout its history to often have only partial alignment at best.
Harsin made a comment early in his exit statement that reflects Auburn’s lack of proper alignment causing a myriad of distractions, or noise.
“I poured my heart and soul into this program and team. We stood together in the face of considerable challenges and outside noise,” he said. “Through my entire time at Auburn we did things the right way, which is not always the easy way.”
Auburn’s powers that be at the school and the cult of boosters close to the school apparently are going to try for better alignment again as it just hired an experienced athletic director in John Cohen. He was Mississippi State’s athletic director with marginal success from 2016-22.
Cohen hopes to be in charge of the search for Harsin’s replacement. How much the money people push and meddle remains to be seen. Possibly because of Auburn’s poor reputation at letting athletic directors direct athletics and football coaches coach free of “noise,” Arkansas athletic director Hunter Yurachek turned the job down before it was offered to Cohen.
Auburn Coach Bryan Harsin Fired As New AD Hired
As news leaked over the weekend that Cohen was in line for the job, some members of the Auburn Nation spoke of their dissatisfaction with Cohen as the choice on social media. After that settled down, Auburn on Monday confirmed Cohen’s hire.
Good luck, John Cohen, and whoever the coach is, you will need it.
Running backs coach Carnell “Cadillac” Williams, a former star tailback at Auburn, has replaced Harsin on an interim basis to finish the season.
Auburn plays at Mississippi State (5-3, 2-3 SEC) at 7:30 p.m. Saturday on ESPN2.
Fired along with Harsin were four hires he brought with him from Boise State – offensive coordinator Eric Kiesau, tight ends coach Brad Bedell, recruiting director Darren Uscher and strength coach JEff Pitman.
Coach Bryan Harsin’s Complete Exit Statement
Here is Bryan Harsin’s complete statement:
“I am incredibly disappointed that I won’t get to lead the Auburn football program and these players into the future. I poured my heart and soul into this program and team. We stood together in the face of considerable challenges and outside noise.
“Through my entire time at Auburn we did things the right way, which is not always the easy way. I am very proud of the resolve shown by everyone in our facility and incredibly grateful for those at Auburn who stood by me and my family. I am certain that this group of players will do great things. I will miss you guys tremendously but will always be there for you and do anything I can to help moving forward. Thank you for believing in me.
“Like any coach with the benefit of hindsight, there are things that could have been done differently. I don’t pretend to be perfect but I am certain I will be better moving forward because of this experience.
“I truly believe Auburn has the potential to be a championship program once again. The resources, financial support and fan base are in place. There are good people throughout this program and University. With complete alignment, the possibilities are endless.
“I hurt for the coaches, staff members and families who are left in limbo. This team and staff came here fully committed to our vision of what we could accomplish in time. That time has been cut short. They will all persevere because of their tremendous character and ability and I will do everything I can to help them with this transition.
“As is life, my family and I will now turn the page and chart our next course, always grateful for the positive relationships formed and memories made on the Plains. Thank you for allowing us to be a part of the Auburn Family.”