Zach Arnett stepped in for Mississippi State as the interim head coach after Mike Leach was hospitalized in 2022, and the Bulldogs took off the interim tag following Leach’s death in December of 2023. Less than a year later, however, Mississippi State has decided to go in a different direction. Arnett was fired on Monday, Nov. 13, following a 51-10 loss to Texas A&M that ended a three-game stretch in which the Bulldogs were outscored 102-26 by SEC foes.
While the Mississippi State coaching search might not draw the same caliber of names as the Texas A&M coaching search, the Bulldogs have proven they can contend with the right leader. They’ve recorded seven seasons of eight wins or more since 2010, finishing four of those years in the AP Top 25. An intriguing mix of current and former college head coaches, plus college and NFL assistants, could all be in play. If you love the Bulldogs, or just want to know if your coach is the next target, be sure to see what the proven team of insiders are saying at Gene’s Page, the 247Sports affiliate that covers Mississippi State.
The staff at Gene’s Page is led by Steve Robertson, who has covered the Bulldogs for 25-plus years and has consistently been the leading insider covering Mississippi State football. Robertson has been a mainstay in the Mississippi State community — breaking the news of both Mike Leach and Dan Mullen’s hiring. He’s written three books: Flim Flam, Stark Villains and Alpha Dawgs, which have all been on the Mississippi best seller’s list.
Robertson and the Gene’s Page staff have collectively put together a list of coaches to watch as the Bulldogs are in the thick of their search. According to Robertson’s sources, Mississippi State has been working behind the scenes for a while knowing a change was imminent.
And right now, Gene’s Page is offering 60% off annual subscriptions*, so now is the time to sign up.
The team at Gene’s Page already has a list out of 18 potential candidates and there are some surprising names on the list. Head to Gene’s Page now to see them all.
Top Mississippi State head coaching candidates
One name the staff has identified as a potential candidate is Dan Mullen. Mullen is the second-winningest coach in Mississippi State history, winning 69 games as the head coach in Starkville from 2009-17. He then became the head coach at Florida from 2018-21, but has been out of coaching since being fired by the Gators.
Mullen is widely known as a quarterback guru who is renowned for his work with Dak Prescott and Tim Tebow. Reunions of this magnitude aren’t typical in college football, though there’s some precedent such as Greg Schiano returning for a second stint at Rutgers.
Another name on the list is Liberty head coach Jamey Chadwell. He’s been a rumored Power 5 target the past couple years after a dominant three-year stretch at Coastal Carolina where he went 31-6 from 2020-22. He ultimately replaced Hugh Freeze at Liberty before the 2023 season, and now he has the Flames off to a 9-0 start, further boosting Chadwell’s stock.
The staff at Gene’s Page points out that Chadwell, a Tennessee native, spent a year as the head coach at Delta State in Mississippi in 2012. So while he lacks Power 5 experience, he’s no stranger to the state and the region. His unique, high-octane offense could be a tremendous fit for a MSU program that took a big step back in that department in 2023. See more candidates at Gene’s Page.
How to get insider Mississippi State coaching search updates
The rest of the list of 18 names to know includes several other intriguing Group of 5 head coaches, and a shocking current SEC head coach “with deep roots at Mississippi State.” See who it is at Gene’s Page.
Who are the top names in the Mississippi State coaching search as the Bulldogs look to replace Zach Arnett, and what surprising current SEC coach could be on the move? Go to Gene’s Page to see their hot board and more, all from a team of reporters with decades of experience covering the Bulldogs, and find out. And reminder, Gene’s Page is offering 60% off an annual VIP membership as a coaching search special, so subscribe now before it’s too late.
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