Overall record: 98-55
- Mississippi State Bulldogs: 2009 to 2017 (69-46)
- Florida Gators: 2018 to present (29-9)
It was a bit difficult to choose between Dan Mullen and Kirby Smart as to who belongs at No. 2 on this list. Smart has won an SEC Championship and was a play away from winning the national championship. Mullen hasn’t won or played for either.
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However, with the Florida Gators finishing ahead of the Georgia Bulldogs last year, Mullen still gets the nod. You have to combine what he did there with his success over nine years with the Mississippi State Bulldogs. Getting that team to No. 1 in the nation one year is still one of the most impressive accomplishments and is why he is high up on this list.
There’s a reason Tennessee football wanted Mullen above all other realistic options for head coaches when it fired Butch Jones in 2017. If John Currie hadn’t waited so late to fire Jones and pulled off the hire of Mullen, he may still be athletic director of the Vols. Mullen is an elite head coach and has Florida in the running with the elite now on a yearly basis.
The Vols really missed their chance to lessen Florida’s dominance in the series against them while Will Muschamp and Jim McElwain were there. They should have won all three times against McElwain and at least once against Muschamp. With Mullen there, it’s going to be a lot harder.