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Chizik: Maryland might have reached out to Malzahn

Auburn coach Gene Chizik said Maryland might have reached out to Tigers offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn about its vacant head coaching job.

"I have not talked to anybody personally, but there are possibilities of contact," Chizik told reporters Tuesday. He said he couldn't offer further details "because I don't have any."

Maryland fired coach Ralph Friedgen last week and there has been speculation that former Texas Tech coach Mike Leach would be the prime candidate to replace him.

Malzahn was a candidate for the Vanderbilt job, but decided to stay with Auburn. He did not show up for a previously scheduled session with reporters after Tuesday's practice.

Malzahn has agreed to a three-year contract worth at least $1 million annually to stay at Auburn — double his current salary. Bonuses could push his pay to $1.3 million.

Malzahn's fast-paced offense ranks sixth nationally in scoring and rushing and seventh in total yards per game. He also coaches Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Cam Newton.

The Tigers are set to face Oregon for the national title on Jan. 10 in Glendale, Ariz.

Malzahn has declined comment on the Vanderbilt job but said afterward that he wanted to be a head coach "somewhere down the line. If it's the right time, right place."

Meanwhile, agent Leigh Steinberg tweeted that his client SMU coach June Jones "turned down riches to continue building SMU FB program." Steinberg did not say what school offered those "riches," but Comcast SportsNet reported Tuesday that Jones had met with Maryland.

SMU is preparing for the Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl Thursday against Army.