Coach Kevin Sumlin is taking his top-notch Houston offense from Conference USA to the Southeastern Conference as the new head coach of the Texas A&M football team.
Sumlin replaces former Aggies coach Mike Sherman who was fired nearly two weeks ago after a disappointing 6-6 season that included a monumental collapse during the second half of the season.
In the meantime the Aggies (6-6) will take on Northwestern (6-6) in the Meineke Car Care Bowl in Houston on Dec. 31, a game that will be helmed by interim coach Tim DeRuyter. Following that game the team will move from the Big 12 to the SEC for the 2012 season.
Speaking about the hiring of Sumlin A&M athletic director Bill Byrne said n a press release:
“(We) spoke to many worthy and qualified candidates, but my decision, which was made in consultation with president (R. Bowen) Loftin, kept leading me to Kevin.”
“I believe he is the right person to lead our football program into the Southeastern Conference. First of all, Kevin is a terrific person. He is also one heck of a recruiter and he will put together a great staff.”
The former Houston coach has some experience at the University having worked as an assistant under R.C. Slocum during the 2001-2002 period.
In a statement about his new job Sumlin noted:
“I am very excited about the opportunity to serve as the head football coach at Texas A&M University,” and “Having coached there before, I understand the culture and embrace the commitment by the 12th Man regarding Aggie football. Aggieland is a special place and I look forward to working with the young men in the football program and recruiting the type of players we need to be successful in the SEC.”
Speculation of a Sumlin hire heated up after Sherman finished his fourth season as the universities head coach with a 25-25 record and Sumlin took the Cougars to 12-1 this season with a final showdown against 9-3 Penn State scheduled for the Jan. 2 TicketCity Bowl.
Assistant coach Tony Levine will serve as the schools interim head coach.
During his time at Houston Sumlin racked up a 35-17 record in four seasons, routinely ranking as one of the nation’s highest scoring teams.
Houston won their first 12 games of the season and were in line for a Bowl Championship series until they lost to Southern Mississippi in the Conference USA championship game.
An official press conference will be held on Monday at which point Sumlin will be officially introduced as A&M’s new head coach.
Do you think Texas A&M made the right decision in hiring Kevin Sumlin as the school’s new men’s football head coach.