Auburn not among teams above vaccination threshold

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Jul. 22—HOOVER, Ala. — Bryan Harsin made his first SEC Media Days appearance to close out the week's festivities, impressively providing a normal 30-minute session while fielding just three questions from reporters in the main room.

Harsin said the Tigers are about 60% vaccinated, meaning they are among the eight teams below the 80% threshold at this point.

Commissioner Greg Sankey opened things Monday by saying six teams are above the threshold. Since then, it's become clear that Alabama, LSU, Georgia and Arkansas are among those six. It's presumed Vanderbilt is the fifth with the school requiring all its students to be vaccinated.

The week ends with uncertainty regarding who the final team is, with Ole Miss and Mississippi State among those.

Harsin takes over for Gus Malzahn for the second time in his career. After Malzahn's lone season in 2012 head coaching Arkansas State, Harsin was hired. Now Malzahn leaves Auburn after an eight-year tenure where Harsin comes in after spending the last seven seasons at the helm of Boise State.

The irony comes from the relationship they have stemming back before their coaching swaps. Harsin read Malzahn's book "The Hurry-Up, No-Huddle: An Offensive Philosophy" in high school.

Harsin and some fellow assistants at Boise State took at trip to visit Malzahn at Tulsa in 2007 and discuss what they read some more.

"We got a chance to sit down for a couple days and talk football, talk about tempo, talk about how he does things," Harsin said. "We took a lot away from that, and that spring we installed some of that no-huddle and some of those ideas. I've always admired Gus. I've always thought he's a great offensive mind."

Malzahn is now the head coach at UCF, but clearly much of his philosophy and coaching style remains evident at Auburn.

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