With several of its recruits being wooed by other programs, Southern Miss has entered “significant discussions” with Arizona State offensive coordinator Chip Lindsey about becoming its new head coach, according to FootballScoop.com.
Lindsey spent the last two seasons as the offensive coordinator at USM before leaving in December to join Todd Graham's staff Arizona State.
According to the report, Lindsey is considering the offer and whether the timing is right.
USM athletic director Bill McGillis hopes to have Todd Monken's replacement hired before this weekend.
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Lindsey and USM defensive coordinator David Duggan, who also interviewed for the job on Monday, are considered serious candidates to replace Monken, who stepped down Sunday to become the offensive coordinator for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Other names drawing speculation for the USM job are Alcorn State head coach Jay Hopson, North Carolina co-offensive coordinator/associate head coach Chris Kapilovic and TCU co-offensive coordinator Doug Meacham. Central Arkansas head coach Steve Campbell, a former Mississippi Gulf Coast CC head coach, has also drawn some buzz as a candidate in South Mississippi.
D'Iberville defensive end Jacques Turner remains verbally committed to Southern Miss despite watching Monken leave for the NFL. Monken went 13-25 at Southern Miss, going 9-5 with a bowl bid in his final season.
Turner said he has been getting plenty of attention from other college programs and received a visit from a member of the Tulane staff on Monday afternoon.
“It's been a little hectic,” Turner said. “My phone has been blowing up. Everybody has been wanting to see where I'm going.”
Even with all the instability, Turner is still in the USM camp.
“I remain committed to Southern Miss,” he said Monday.
Turner is set to receive a visit from Texas-San Antonio defensive coordinator Pete Golding on Tuesday.
Golding served as the USM secondary coach the last two years before he was recently hired to Frank Wilson's UTSA staff.
As for the visit from a Tulane staff member, Turner said, “I just wanted to see what they had to say.”
Turner said he has no preference as to who might be the next head coach of the Golden Eagles.
“It doesn't really matter to me who is the head coach or not,” Turner said. “I'm just going to go in and do what I've got to do to play. I'm going to have a great career at Southern Miss no matter who the head coach is.”
One Coast recruit who committed to Southern Miss in November is re-opening his recruitment.
Harrison Central senior defensive tackle Jordon Beaton is now looking at other programs like Louisiana-Lafayette and Indiana, according to Harrison Central head coach Casey Cain said.
USM's interest in Beaton cooled after his top recruiter at the school, Golding, left for UTSA.