Now that "Chucky" has officially told the Miami Hurricanes that he is loving life (and the money) at ESPN, the 'Canes turn their focus to Mississippi State head coach Dan Mullen.
Coach Mullen told the media in attendance at Tuesday night's Connerly Awards, that everyone was asking the wrong person about his job status. He said the following:
"If you want to find out if I'm a candidate for any job, you're talking to the wrong person. She is right around the corner. She really likes Starkville, Mississippi."
That "she" he is referring to is Megan Mullen, Dan's wife. I know that Dan Mullen's statement was half joking, but if there is any truth to it, I hope every Starkville citizen that is a friend to Megan Mullen is in a very generous mood this Christmas. However, sadly, that may not be enough.
The community and friends are great and all, but I'm going to assume that Megan Mullen is also a lot like many other women I know. She probably loves to spend a lot of money shopping.
That brings us back to Miami. The only way I really see Dan picking up and moving his family there is if they're going to pay him more money. There apparently has not been a meeting with Miami officials yet and I don't know if there ever will be. However, don't be too terribly alarmed if it is eventually confirmed that Dan did indeed talk to the 'Canes.
You see, as much as we all love Dan Mullen, the man is still doing a job. He has a tremendous talent for coaching and he should be paid well for what he does. Having said that, please know that just because Mullen speaks to someone at Miami, it doesn't mean he will take the job. It's just part of the negotiating game that good coaches play. For instance, at the end of the 2008 season there were all sorts of rumors going around that Houston Nutt was possibly going to Auburn. It just so happened that during this period of time Nutt was working on a contract extension with Ole Miss. All of the talk that followed that season surrounding his possible departure certainly did not hurt his case to get more money from Mississippi. Of course we all now know that Nutt stayed at Ole Miss and his wallet became thicker in the process.
I've said before that Miami is not what it used to be and I'm not the only one who sees it that way. I just do not believe that anything, outside of money, would persuade Dan Mullen to go down there. He knows what he has at Mississippi State. The progress that he has made in two years has been extraordinary to say the least. MSU is gaining lots of momentum in recruiting and the future currently looks bright.
Coach Mullen currently has MSU fans eating out of the palm of his hand and hopefully he is aware of just how tolerant MSU's fans really are after being beaten and bruised year after year through disappointing seasons. There wouldn't be talk of kicking him out the door if the Bulldogs won less games next year. We know we've got a good thing going. State fans have even put up a website in an effort to show Dan just how much they care. It's here if you'd like to see for yourself.
As far as money and Mississippi State goes, Dan is due a raise and I'm pretty certain MSU is capable of paying him a salary comparable to what Miami can offer.
And Dan, I'd personally like for you to take a look at this site: http://hatemiami.com/
Bulldog faithful, don't get too alarmed if you hear that Dan Mullen has spoken with the University of Miami. I'm certainly not guaranteeing anything, but please be aware of one thing. It's all part of the game.