Auburn coaching candidate makes a simple, strong pitch to Tigers

Liberty head coach Hugh Freeze appears to have made a huge statement towards him potentially getting the Auburn job by beating Arkansas in Fayetteville.

Do not be shocked if Hugh Freeze is backing coaching in the SEC West next season.

The disgraced former Ole Miss head coach seems to have completely reinvented himself at Liberty. Since taking over the Flames, he has had two great seasons in the last three years, including this one. Liberty has improved to 8-1 on the season after beating Arkansas in Fayetteville. This was his first win in an SEC stadium in six years. What if Auburn wants him?

“I don’t know that Auburn wants me. I have no clue,” said Freeze to 247Sports after the game. “I know this: I have won everywhere I’ve been and my staff and kids have turned programs fast. It’s our culture that we instill. I know we do that and the proof is in the pudding.”

Liberty has moved up to No. 19 in the latest AP Top 25 Poll, 10 spots ahead of the only team who has beaten them in the now unranked Wake Forest Demon Deacons. One point is all that separates the Flames from being perfect through 10 weeks. If there was a time and a place for Freeze to get back into the SEC, Auburn after the disaster known as the Bryan Harsin era would be it.

Even more proof that he is a worthy candidate, just look at what he did with former Auburn transfer quarterback Malik Willis, a man who was drafted in the third round by the Tennessee Titans and will square off vs. Patrick Mahomes on Sunday Night Football this weekend.

Hugh Freeze may have aced Auburn audition with Liberty’s win over Arkansas

Although Freeze can claim he has not been contacted by Auburn’s new athletic director John Cohen, he is represented by Jimmy Sexton of CAA, and we all know what that means when it comes to top-flight college coaches. Freeze is about to get paid big time, perhaps beyond what Liberty gave him. Though he can stay in Lynchburg for as long as he wants, he could leave soon.

This is because there are six Power Five openings before the middle part of November. Freeze has been linked to Nebraska’s vacancy as well, but we all saw how much success he had at Ole Miss before scandal brought a swift end to that for him in Oxford. We know Freeze can win in the SEC, but can he win at a more high-profile job like Auburn without having to get his hands dirty again?

Ultimately, Freeze is not for everyone, but he could be just right for someone. Auburn is desperate. Although Alabama seems to be fading rather quickly in Nick Saban’s early 70s, cross-divisional rival Georgia is not slowing down and tertiary rival LSU seems to have made the right hire in prying Brian Kelly away from Notre Dame. Auburn needs a coach who can instill fear in those programs.

It comes down to if Freeze is the right fit for Auburn now, but he is now a very strong candidate.

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