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Report: There's A New Leader For The Auburn Job

Auburn's mascot greeting fans.

AUBURN, AL - SEPTEMBER 17: The Auburn Tigers mascot , Aubie, greets fans at Tiger Walk before an NCAA college football game against the Texas A&M Aggies on September 17, 2016 in Auburn, Alabama. (Photo by Butch Dill/Getty Images)

There's reportedly a new top option for the head coaching job in Auburn.

After Gus Malzahn was fired earlier this month, defensive coordinator and interim head coach Kevin Steele was many analyst's No. 1 pick for the Tigers job next year. But, reports from Philip Marshall of Auburn Undercover tell a different story on Monday.

After a successful meeting with program officials this weekend, Louisiana coach Billy Napier has reportedly jumped ahead of all remaining candidates for the Auburn job.

As an up-and-coming coach in college football, Napier is an attractive option for any program.

The third-year Louisiana coach has valuable prior experience coaching for some of the nation's top programs. Napier served as an assistant for both Alabama and Clemson prior to taking his head coaching job in 2018.

His track record with the Rajin' Cajuns is impressive. After going 7-7 in his first season, Napier turned the program around, notching an 11-3 record and a bowl game victory in 2019. This year has been even more noteworthy, leading his team to a 9-1 record and a First Responder Bowl invitation. The coach's piece de resistance in 2020 was a 31-14 upset win over now No. 10 ranked Iowa State.

Napier was also considered for the South Carolina head coaching job before the Gamecocks ultimately decided to go with Shane Beamer.

While his success with Louisiana is impressive, it's clear Napier is open to new opportunities.

Stay tuned for updates on the Auburn coaching search.