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5 Coaches That Could Take Over Tennessee, Arkansas, Ole Miss and Any Other SEC School That May be Looking

Know their names now so you can sound like a genius in December.

NCAA Football: Kansas at Iowa State
He’s Iowa State’s coach for now, but Matt Campbell will be fielding calls from everyone this offseason.
Reese Strickland-USA TODAY Sports

As of this week, everyone in the SEC is past the half-way point in their schedule. Here’s what we know about the hot seats in the SEC. Butch Jones is still employed in name only. Brett Bielema likely won’t be back in Fayetteville next year. Matt Luke is technically the head coach at Ole Miss, but the school has decided to play the field.

So those are three jobs I feel confident saying will be open at season’s end. Don’t forget about Auburn and A&M. Both of those teams are still capable of collapsing and those jobs opening up.

Let’s go for a ride on the coaching carousel. Who are the names you need to know as ADs start their searches? Here are five names that will come up a lot in the offseason. I can’t guarantee they will end up in the SEC, but I can guarantee they will all be asked if they are interested.


NCAA Football: Nevada at Colorado State
The Bobo name, while hilarious, is well-known in SEC circles.
Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Mike Bobo wouldn’t be the sexiest hire in the world; and there are more than a few folks in Gainesville that would warn you to be wary of offensive-minded head coaches from Colorado State coming to the SEC. But Bobo’s name is already being floated as a potential successor to Butch Jones at Tennessee.

Bobo’s SEC ties run deep, which is something I am on the record as saying shouldn’t sway any opinions on him, but Bobo’s ties run WAY deep. He was A QB at Georgia. He was the OC at Georgia. His dad was one of the most respected high school coaches in the state of Georgia. Add to all that the fact that Bobo’s Rams are the only team to really put points up against Bama and that he has a history of recruiting the South very well and he may be a tough candidate to pass over.


NCAA Football: Texas at Iowa State
The next head coach at Tennessee? How about Arkansas? UCLA, maybe? Campbell could literally have his pick this off-season.
Reese Strickland-USA TODAY Sports

He’s this year’s Tom Herman. Everyone with a marquee opening or an opening they believe to be marquee will put in a call to Ames, Iowa to see if this guy want’s to move to somewhere that isn’t Ames, Iowa.

Campbell is young. He turned in three 9-win seasons in his time as Toledo’s head coach and now in his second year at Iowa State has the Cyclones thinking about a 9-win season of their own.

What could work against Campbell? Iowa State is literally the biggest place he has ever coached. He got his start as a grad assistant at Bowling Green. His first full time job was at DIII Mount Union. Then, he spent eight years in the MAC before moving to Ames.


NCAA Football: Eastern Michigan at Army
Is the SEC ready to bring back “ten yards and a cloud of dust” football?
Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports

Call me crazy if you like. Call this choice clickbait if you must. Now look at Ole Miss. Look at Arkansas. Are you telling me they are in a position right now to turn down the idea of installing the triple-option because it is too “outside the box”?

Here’s what I’ve learned in my time covering the ACC. The triple option creates headaches for everyone in the short term. If you’re Ole Miss and you don’t want NCAA sanctions to destroy you and doom you to an eternity of 4-8, give Monken a call.

The guy has turned Army into a perennial bowl team. Is he Ken Niumatololo good right now? No, but if Niumatololo didn’t leave Navy for BYU, he ain’t leaving Navy.

Monken is younger (slightly). He has deep recruiting ties in the Southeast thanks to his time at Georgia Southern. Did I mention he has turned Army into a perennial bowl team? I mean, Jesus-tap-dancing-Christ! That should be enough to get an interview anywhere you want!


NCAA Football: Appalachian State at Tennessee
Whoever pulls this North Carolina natives out of the Blue Ridge Mountains will be very happy.
Randy Sartin-USA TODAY Sports

Let me come completely clean. I love Scott Satterfield. He is everything that you could want in a coach. He is passionate about his program. He is a cheerleader for the school and the community. Spend five minutes talking to the guy and you’ll see why kids want to come play for him.

He has put up a 37-20 record through five and a half seasons in Boone. He already has one Sun Belt title and looks like he is on his way to a second. And the problem for any Power 5 program that wants to hire Scott Satterfield is that may be enough for him.

Satterfield is an App State alum. He has lived in Boone most of his adult life and has made it clear that he isn’t looking for that to change. When money is involved, you never say never, but anyone that wants to hire Satterfield away will have to talk the former Mountaineer quarterback into giving up his dream job.


NCAA Football: CFP National Championship-Clemson Practice
Clemson’s DC could be the next Kirby Smart. But who will pry him away from Dabo’s side?
Bart Boatwright-USA TODAY Sports

Brett Venables is 46 years old. It seems like the clock is ticking on his days of being a hot, young candidate. Especially when you consider all the guys on this list that are younger than him.

The fact is though, you cannot overlook what Venables has accomplished at Clemson. He has rebuilt the best defense in the country not once, not twice, but three times. That’s not just about recruiting. That is a sign that he gets how to coach the talent he is given. He’s got a Broyles Award. He’s got a national title. He has another CFP title game appearance. The only thing stopping Brett Venables from becoming a head coach is his own desire for the title.

Venables is paid very well. Not being a head coach means less stress. He may be waiting out his mentor Bill Snyder at Kansas State, but if an SEC school with deep pockets comes calling, it may be hard for Venables to say no thank you.