The SEC coaching carousel has been spinning at breakneck speed during the past few days. Three jobs -- Florida, Mississippi State and Ole Miss -- have been filled, while two others -- Tennessee and Texas A&M -- are on their way to being filled. Check out the early grades of the coaching hires so far:
Dan Mullen, Florida
The Buzz: While not as sexy of a hire as Chip Kelly, Florida did manage to score a great coach with the addition of Mullen. Duringnine seasons at Mississippi State, Mullen has amassed a record of 69-46 with the Bulldogs, averaging about 7.7 wins per season. His connection to Florida is undeniable after spending several seasons in the mid-2000s as the Gators’ offensive coordinator under Urban Meyer, helping the team to a national championship in 2008. Mullen’s forte is developing quarterbacks something he’s done with players like Alex Smith (Utah), Chris Leak (Florida), Tim Tebow (Florida), Dak Prescott (Mississippi State) and Nick Fitzgerald (Mississippi State). His challenge is to resurrect a Florida offense that’s been putrid since Meyer’s departure in 2010.
Joe Moorhead, Mississippi State
The Buzz: It’s been almost a decade since Mississippi State last introduced a new head coach. Mullen’s departure left the program looking for someone to step in and continue the work Mullen was able to do with the Bulldogs. Enter Joe Moorhead. The former Fordham coach led the Rams to a 38-13 record before joining the Penn State staff as the offensive coordinator. During the past two seasons, he’s transformed the Nittany Lions offense into one of the most efficient offenses in the country. He helped develop quarterback Trace McSorley into a potential NFL prospect.
Matt Luke, Ole Miss
The Buzz: Luke did an admirable job taking over an Ole Miss team that suffered the shock of losing its head coach after Hugh Freeze suddenly resigned in late July. With the program in the middle of a bitter NCAA investigation that forced the school to self-imposed scholarship reductions and a one-year bowl ban, Luke kept the Rebels focused enough to win six games this season. There are challenges ahead as the school awaits NCAA sanctions, but Luke provides some stability heading into the future.