Originally written on Crystal Ball Run  |  Last updated 11/1/14
In a bit of a surprise move, former Auburn offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn is returning to the Plains as the school’s new head coach. On Tuesday the school announced that Malzahn- who spent the last season as head coach at Arkansas State- will take over for his former boss Gene Chizik, who was fired after the Tigers finished 3-9 last season. The school will welcome Malzahn in a Tuesday night press conference. In a statement, Auburn athletic director Jay Jacobs had this to say about the hire: "We are tremendously excited that Gus Malzahn will be our next head football coach. Coach Malzahn was the clear unanimous choice of our search committee, and I am pleased that Dr. (Jay) Gogue has accepted our recommendation. This is a great day for Auburn football and Auburn University." The news came as a bit of a surprise, if only because Malzahn’s name didn’t appear to be at the top of Auburn’s original list. When Chizik was fired two weeks ago, most assumed that Jacobs and the Tigers’ administration would zero in on former Arkansas head coach Bobby Petrino or current Louisville head man Charlie Strong to be their next coach. However, recent reports eventually revealed that the decision came down to Malzahn and current Alabama defensive coordinator Kirby Smart, before Jacobs made the call on Malzahn. However if the move was a bit surprising, it certainly wasn’t disappointing to Auburn fans. The Tigers know what they’re getting from Malzahn, a man who was Auburn’s offensive coordinator from 2009 to 2011 and also won the Frank Broyles Award as college football’s top assistant coach in 2010. From the moment Malzahn stepped onto the college football scene seven seasons ago, his fast-paced spread offensive attack has seemingly worked at every stop he’s been at. Malzahn has essentially had college football’s Midas touch. In Malzahn’s first year as offensive coordinator at Arkansas in 2006, the Razorbacks went 10-4 and won the SEC West, and he later parlayed that job into two successful years at Tulsa where the Golden Hurricane led college football in total offense each season he was at the school. The following season Malzahn came to Auburn and took a rag-tag group and turned them into an offense that went from averaging a meager 17.3 points per game, to one which put up over 33 in 2009. The following year Auburn won a National Championship with Cam Newton leading the charge on offense and after a disappointing 2011 season (where Auburn ranked 100th nationally in total offense) Malzahn became Arkansas State’s head coach this fall. He led the Red Wolves to a 9-3 record in his only season at the school. Now the question becomes whether Malzahn can put together another offensive reclamation project on the Plains. Auburn is coming off what is undoubtedly one of their worst seasons in program history, in a year where they finished 3-9 overall and without a win in SEC play. In the process, Auburn also tried to switch from Malzahn’s spread attack to a new pro-style offense under new offensive coordinator Scot Loeffler. It’s safe to say the decision turned into an unmitigated disaster. Auburn finished 2012 averaging just 18.3 points per game. Clearly Malzahn has his work cut out for him when he takes over at Auburn next year. However, if there’s one man who can implement a quick fix, it appears to be him. For all his opinion, insight and analysis be sure to follow Aaron on Twitter @Aaron_Torres.  
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Eli Manning expects Giants' offense to take off in 2015

Bruce Irvin apologizes for DUI April Fools' joke

Report: LeBron James calls plays, David Blatt repeats them

Anthony Davis puts Harden ahead of himself for MVP

LeBron James lists his top three friends in the NBA

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Reds to have in-stadium nursery

Izzo: MSU could win football, basketball titles in same year

Durant ‘would love to’ spend entire career with Thunder

Elementary school sportswriter has hot take on Cam Newton

Romo was willing to take pay cut to keep DeMarco Murray

Marcus Mariota reportedly not planning to attend NFL draft

Final Four fact or fiction

Five worst situations at quarterback in NFL

Young sportswriter behind Cam Newton column speaks out

Tom Brady posts Photoshop as April Fools' joke on Facebook

'Zo on MJ: He would average almost 50 in today's NBA

Report: Las Vegas season ticket drive passes goal of 10,000

WATCH: Steph Curry drops Chris Paul with crossover

WATCH: Spoelstra gives nice shoutout to Craig Sager

WATCH: Drew Miller takes skate to the face

WATCH: Gronk describes his perfect wife

Reigning National Champions to boycott Final Four in Indiana

This isn’t Tom Izzo’s greatest March masterpiece

College Football News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Final Four fact or fiction

Five worst QB situations in NFL

WATCH: Curry drops CP3 with crossover

Durant wants to spend career in OKC

This isn’t Tom Izzo’s greatest March masterpiece

Are the Angels being overlooked?

Top 20 players in the Final Four

Report: Tiger's plane spotted in Augusta

Moss shares story on meeting Deion

Five coaches already on the hot seat

Can we envision the Hawks in the Finals?

10 winners and losers from the past week in the NFL

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.