Syracuse Football: Orange reportedly finalizing a deal for next head coach

Syracuse football (Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports)
Syracuse football (Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports) /

Syracuse football is reportedly finalizing a deal for its next head coach to be New Jersey native Fran Brown, according to a media report.

Brent Axe of, citing two sources, reported on Monday night that the Orange was honing in on Georgia defensive backs coach Fran Brown as its next head coach. SU Athletics announced on November 19 that it had fired Dino Babers and was conducting a national search for a new head coach.

Prior to Axe’s report, The Athletic’s Bruce Feldman first reported on his X page that Brown had “emerged as the top target for the Syracuse head coaching vacancy.”

As of Tuesday morning when I was writing this column, I hadn’t seen any official announcement from SU Athletics regarding the ‘Cuse head-coaching search.

Syracuse football may soon have its next head coach, per reports.

According to Brown’s bio on the Georgia athletics department Web site, he was named defensive backs coach for the Bulldogs on February 22, 2022. According to national experts, he is one of the top recruiters across the country.

Georgia, by the way, has won the last two national championships. In the current 2023 term, the Bulldogs are 12-0, ranked No. 1 in the Associated Press and Coaches top-25 polls, and will play No. 8 Alabama this Saturday in the Southeastern Conference title game.

Brown hails from Camden, N.J., and is a graduate of Western Carolina University. Prior to his role at Georgia, he held positions at Rutgers, Temple and Baylor.

Currently, Georgia holds the top spot nationwide in the 2024 team recruiting rankings, according to the industry-generated 247Sports Composite.

Nicole Auerbach, a college football insider with NBC Sports and The Athletic, said in a post on X that “Fran Brown has a lot of experience coaching in the northeast at Temple and Rutgers (and is well-regarded by HS coaches in the area — NJ, specifically).”

While Brown hasn’t served as a head coach at the collegiate level, his extensive recruiting ties to New Jersey and the Northeast region are undeniably critical as it pertains to the Syracuse football head-coaching gig.

Steve Wiltfong, the director of recruiting for 247Sports, has said in part that “Brown is one of the elite recruiters in the country. If you were putting together a short list of guys that are of the best recruiters in the country, Fran Brown would be on it.”

"Wiltfong added of Brown, “He has proven that he can be elite in several settings at Temple, at Baylor and at Rutgers helping elevate rosters and turning programs into winners, particularly at Temple and at Baylor. His ability to communicate with prospects, their coaches, their trainers, their parents — he is off the charts. He is just very passionate about connecting with people.”"

I’ll of course continue to monitor this on Tuesday and throughout the week. Brandon Marcello of 247Sports said in an article, “Syracuse is expected to make a hire by midweek.”

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