Well, we knew the speculation season during coaching searches would start soon after Saturday night's games ended, but not everyone expected such a bang as Georgia parting ways with Mark Richt.
Early speculation says that Mississippi State coach Dan Mullen may be on Georgia's radar.
Kirby is undoubtedly the fallback if Jimbo/Mullen say no. RT @BobbyClayton3: Kirby smart. Keeps Pruitt and hires a new offensive coordinator— Bryan Fischer (@BryanDFischer) November 29, 2015
Dan Mullen has wanted that Georgia job pretty badly for a while. I bet the Dawgs aim higher at first, though.— Wes Rucker (@wesrucker247) November 29, 2015
First off...it is still way to early to get worked up over anything in this process, so RELAX. It's speculation from a couple of writers at this point. It's worth addressing, but not worth panicking over.
Whether or not Mullen has acutally wanted the Georgia job for a while or if that is something that got floated out there, the fact is that if Mullen is a target, and Georgia comes calling, he'd be foolish not to listen. You always have to at least listen if something big comes calling.
From an outsider's perspective Mullen would make sense at Georgia. During his time at Mississippi State, he has pushed the Bulldogs to the No. 1 ranking, had the team in the mix for the SEC West championship on the final weekend of the season, had a quarterback that made an early Heisman run, had a winning record in all but one season, but most importantly, is known for developing quarterbacks. One could easily argue that the lack of quarterback play this year at Georgia kept this team out of national championship contention, yet one has to also acknowledge the injury suffered by Nick Chubb as well.
From Mullen's perspective, how could Georgia not be an attractive offer? The pay would be great for Mullen and his staff, a very important part of the puzzle. Mullen would also have the benefit of being right next to the Sunshine State in terms of recruiting, and Georgia is also known for its football talent. Add that to the Georgia brand, and Mullen could be sitting on top recruiting classes ever year. He has won at Mississippi State without doing that, one would have to think he could be a title contender at Georgia with it.
At the end of the day, who knows how this plays out, but as I said in my lambasted article a couple of days ago, the Virginia Techs and Virginias did not worry me. The jobs that would come open that no one expected worry me. Now does all of this mean that Mullen has eyes for Georgia and Georgia has eyes for him? Not hardly. There would have to be many things happen on both sides before that relationship started. However, it might be a bit a reminder that the Bulldogs have a better coach than some fans think they do at times. No matter, this is something worth keeping an eye on to see if it heats up at all or if it fizzles quickly.
While Kirby Smart's name has come up a few times in this mix, it is hard to believe that Georgia would make this move without having someone in place. I have a hard time believing they would make this move with a coordinator in place instead of a proven head coach. Again, that does not mean it is Mullen. It does not mean that is not. It just means that it seems hard to believe that Georgia would go into this having settled for Smart, who will by all accounts become a solid head coach, but one would have to wonder if he is ready for such a job.
Last night, many Bulldog fans took to the internet wishing that Mullen and his staff would leave. While last night was disappointing, and in many ways, the 2015 season as a whole was a season of what could have been, those fans may find themselves wanting that wish back in a few days if Mullen heads to Athens.