Rumor Mill: Has Louisville’s Charlie Strong interviewed for the Auburn job?

The short answer, according to AL.com, is yes.

Louisville Cardinals head coach Charlie Strong reacts on the sidelines against the Pittsburgh Panthers during the fourth quarter at Heinz Field. The Louisville Cardinals won 45-35. (Charles LeClaire-US PRESSWIRE)

However, Strong himself has provided an answer one letter shorter: No.

Strong has denied the rumors swirling about him that Auburn is interested in bringing him aboard, but a source close to the situation has confirmed that Strong did indeed speak with a member of the Tigers’ head coach search committee, possibly over the phone.

Does it sound like we’re grasping at straws here? Well, if so, than one possibly understands how Auburn fans have been feeling, grasping at straws and hoping for wins that never came for months on end.

The search committee Auburn has put together is comprised of athletic director Jay Jacobs, Bo Jackson (who should probably just go ahead and place himself on every search committee ever formed through sheer awesomeness alone) Pat Sullivan and Mac Crawford.

In three years at Louisville, Strong has turned around a slumping program, compiling a 23-15 overall record; his team is currently sitting at 9-2 overall and can earn the Big East championship with a win over Rutgers.

Prior to his massively successful stint over in the state of Kentucky, Strong spent 20 years as an assistant in the SEC. His most significant stops were as Florida’s defensive coordinator from 2003-09 and South Carolina’s defensive coordinator from 1999-2001.

The time spent in the SEC obviously provided him with an intimate knowledge of not only the amount of work and game planning necessary to be successful in the nation’s toughest conference, but also the amount of scrutiny he will face from the media. Also, with several high-profile recruits rescinding their commitments following the firing of Gene Chizik, Strong’s proven ability to recruit winners certainly does not hurt.

Beyond Strong, Auburn has been rumored to be looking at former Arkansas coach Bobby Petrino, Florida State coach Jimbo Fisher and Arkansas State coach Gus Malzahn, all of whom are former War Eagle assistants. The search committee is also looking at TCU coach Gary Patterson, Alabama defensive coordinator Kirby Smart and Boise State’s Chris Peterson. You know, the usual suspects on every athletics department’s short list.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/tom.burns.5650 Tom Burns

    I would welcome a coach of Charlie Strong’s character and SEC experience.