Coordinators who could land HC jobs

Updated: June 12, 2013, 10:58 AM ET
By Travis Haney

Maybe they're on scratch pads, embedded in iPhone notes or just in their brains. But rest assured, every athletic director in the country has some semblance of a short list for the program's next football coach.

Not to pick on Arkansas, but Bobby Petrino showed last year that a program, even one that seemed steady, is never that far from a move. After a rocky fall, AD Jeff Long landed a surprising choice. As we learned, Long had admired Bret Bielema from afar -- to the point that he at one point reached out to praise his acumen.

Oregon, Texas Tech and Kentucky are among the schools that promoted or hired assistants to fill vacancies. So, which coordinators might be on ADs' minds as next-in-line head coaching candidates?

1 (tie). Chad Morris, Clemson Tigers OC; Kirby Smart, Alabama Crimson Tide DC

These two are inseparable, illustrated by how many job openings with which they have both been linked. They seem content to wait for the right opportunity while taking advantage of their current gigs. Smart has already cashed in, literally -- he's one of the country's highest-paid assistants -- and in the form of title rings.