Skip to main content

Derek Mason leaving Auburn as Bryan Harsin continues staff shakeup

Harsin has responded to a disappointing 6-7 debut by replacing both coordinators.

Derek Mason will not return for a second season as Auburn's defensive coordinator, according to multiple reports.

The move comes as Bryan Harsin re-tools his staff following a disappointing 6-7 debut on The Plains.

He will promote Jeff Schmedding, a former Boise State compatriot, to defensive coordinator. Brought over as assistant head coach, linebackers coach and defensive run game coordinator, Schmedding ran Harsin's defenses in 2019-20. 

Sources tell FootballScoop that a Pac-12 program looked into hiring Schmedding as defensive coordinator but he chose to remain at Auburn, and will now be rewarded with a promotion to coordinator.

According to Phillip Marshall of Auburn Undercover, Schmedding will coordinate the defense without a specific positional assignment. Marshall also reports Mason appears headed to Oklahoma State. 

Multiple outlets reported Friday morning that former Tiger Jimmy Brumbaugh has been hired to coach the defensive line, and former Florida linebackers coach Christian Robinson will take over Schmedding's linebackers duties. Bert Watts will continue coaching edge rushers and outside linebackers, and Zac Etheridge will now coach the entire secondary after handling corners in '21. 

The move means Harsin will enter a crucial second season with new coordinators on both sides of the ball. 

Mike Bobo was not retained after one season running the offense; Harsin hired Seattle Seahawks quarterbacks coach Austin Davis to replace him.

An SEC outsider, Harsin originally hired 'SEC guys' in the former Vanderbilt head coach Mason and Bobo, the former Georgia quarterback and coordinator. In Year 2, he's banking on Schmedding and Davis, who have one combined season of SEC experience. 

Four of Harsin's 10 original hires have departed the staff after one season on the job. 

As always, stay tuned to The Scoop for the latest.