Oregon football coach Dan Lanning is “not going anywhere” despite suggestions he could pursue the head-coaching vacancy at Texas A&M, he told local media Monday. Here’s what you need to know:
- Texas A&M fired Jimbo Fisher on Sunday, owing the coach more than $75 million.
- The 37-year-old Lanning is 19-4 at Oregon, including a 9-1 start this year. He has a $20 million buyout to leave the Ducks.
- Lanning added Monday that “There’s zero chance I would be coaching somewhere else” and he has “unfinished business” with Oregon. “There’s a lot that I want to accomplish here at Oregon,” he said. “My No. 1 priority is being elite here at Oregon and we have the resources, the tools, anybody that can’t understand why you would want to be here at this place does not understand exactly what exists here.”
Why Lanning is in the conversation
It is and was of course going to be a question if Lanning was even interested in Texas A&M to begin with. When he signed a new contract in July with a $20 million buyout to leave, that was a signal to everyone that he was sticking with Oregon for a while. And that was before Oregon got a Big Ten invitation, bringing even more incentive to hang around.
People assume Lanning will become an SEC head coach one day because he coached at Georgia and Alabama and is one of the best coaches and recruiters in the country. He might one day, but Texas A&M isn’t one of those jobs. With the resources available at Oregon and the Big Ten spot secured, there’s no reason to bolt. Willie Taggart and Mario Cristobal both left Oregon for the state of Florida because their dream jobs opened. Lanning has made it clear he’s not going anywhere. — Chris Vannini, senior college football writer
What this means for Texas A&M
Lanning would have been a terrific fit at A&M because of his SEC experience and how well he has recruited so far at Oregon, turning in a top-10 signing class in 2022 and possessing a class that is currently No. 6 in the 247Sports Composite rankings. The on-field product speaks for itself, with the Ducks in the thick of the College Football Playoff race.
If Lanning is truly unavailable as he said, it’s not a huge setback for the Aggies. Texas A&M athletic director Ross Bjork said Sunday that the school made the move to fire Fisher when it did to get an early start on the search and get a sense for the market and who could be available well ahead of key upcoming dates like the opening of the transfer portal window (Dec. 4). Ideally, the Aggies would like to have someone in place by then. They will cast a wide net in their search and have the resources and roster talent that can attract a bevy of quality candidates. — Sam Khan Jr., senior college football writer
(Photo: Christopher Creveling / USA Today)