Amid the news that the program had fired Joe Moorhead, one of the names most frequently connected to the newly opened Mississippi State job was Louisiana’s Billy Napier. The Ragin’ Cajuns coach is looking for his 11th win on Monday in the LendingTree Bowl against Miami (OH).
Napier just received an extension through the 2025 season from the program this week. Leaving days later might’ve been a bad look, though it’d be hard to blame anyone for jumping from the Sun Belt to the SEC.
It doesn’t appear that the Ragin’ Cajuns have to worry about that now, though. Per college football insider Brett McMurphy, Napier has already turned down the opportunity to make the move to Starkville.
Louisiana’s Billy Napier, expected to be among Mississippi State’s top targets, has declined an opportunity to join the Bulldogs, source told @Stadium
— Brett McMurphy (@Brett_McMurphy) January 3, 2020
Grantham served in the same role at Mississippi State under Dan Mullen, before joining him at UF. Hudspeth has had two stops at MSU, under Mullen early last decade, and under Moorhead last season. He was the head coach at Louisiana after the first Mississippi State tenure, but lost his job following NCAA sanctions, despite a successful term on the field.
Mississippi State alum and current New England Patriots special teams coordinator Joe Judge has also been connected to the job. He has also coached under Nick Saban at Alabama, giving him a pretty impressive pedigree, despite his lesser name recognition.
The FootballScoop report states that those at Mississippi State expect the job to fill relatively quickly. The Bulldogs join Arkansas, Missouri, and rival Ole Miss as SEC programs that have come open this season.