Dan Mullen

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Dan Mullen
Dan Mullen.png
Mullen at Florida in 2018
Current position
TitleHead coach
Annual salary$6.103 million
Biographical details
Born (1972-04-27) April 27, 1972 (age 48)
Drexel Hill, Pennsylvania
Alma materUrsinus College BS Ed
Wagner College MS Ed
Playing career
Position(s)Tight end
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
1994–1995Wagner (WR)
1996–1997Columbia (WR)
1998Syracuse (GA)[1]
1999–2000Notre Dame (GA)
2001–2002Bowling Green (QB)
2003–2004Utah (QB)
2005–2008Florida (OC/QB)
2009–2017Mississippi State
Head coaching record
Accomplishments and honors
As an Offensive Coordinator:
  • 2x BCS (2006, 2008)
  • 2x Mountain West (2003, 2004)
  • 2x SEC (2006, 2008)
  • 2x SEC Eastern Division (2006, 2008)
SEC Coach of the Year (2014)
George Munger Award (2014)

Daniel Mullen (born April 27, 1972) is an American football coach. He is currently the head football coach at the University of Florida. Mullen previously was the head coach at Mississippi State University.[2]

High school career[edit]

Mullen attended Trinity High School of Manchester, New Hampshire, where he helped lead the Pioneers to the state championship in 1988.[3]

College career[edit]

Mullen attended Ursinus College in Collegeville, Pennsylvania, where he lettered for two years playing tight end and was a first-team All-Centennial Conference selection his senior year.[4] He graduated in 1994 with a bachelor's degree in Education. He went on to Wagner College, where he coached wide receivers and earned a master's degree in Education in 1996.[5]

Coaching career[edit]

Prior to his hiring at Mississippi State, Mullen served as the quarterbacks coach and offensive coordinator at the University of Florida. Prior to that, he coached under Urban Meyer at the University of Utah, where he was quarterbacks coach for the Utes during their undefeated 2004 season, and Bowling Green University. At Utah, Mullen developed quarterback Alex Smith into the number 1 overall pick in the 2005 NFL Draft. After Meyer left to take the head coaching position at Florida, Mullen served as the interim offensive coordinator during Utah's Fiesta Bowl victory over Pitt. During his tenure at Utah, he also recruited and briefly coached Brian Johnson, a quarterback who led Utah to 13–0 and a Sugar Bowl victory in 2009.[6]

As a coach, Mullen has tutored several notable players, including quarterbacks Alex Smith (Utah), Heisman Trophy-winner Tim Tebow (Florida), Dak Prescott (Mississippi State), and Kyle Trask (Florida).

Mullen, along with former Philadelphia Eagles and San Francisco 49ers head coach Chip Kelly, and former Winnipeg Blue Bombers offensive coordinator Gary Crowton, are part of the so-called "New Hampshire mafia" as they all have strong connections to New Hampshire.[7]

Mississippi State[edit]

On December 11, 2008, Mullen was hired as the head coach of Mississippi State by former Athletic Director Greg Byrne.[8]

Mullen's first recruiting class at Mississippi State was ranked 19th in the nation by Scout.com.[9] and his 2012 recruiting class was ranked 18th in the nation.[10] In his first season as head coach at Mississippi State in 2009, his team went 5–7 against the toughest schedule in the nation.[11]

In 2010, his Bulldog team went 9–4 overall and 4–4 in the SEC including victories over Georgia, Florida, Kentucky, and Mississippi; the four losses came to teams ranked in the top 12. Mississippi State capped off the 2010 season by defeating traditional power Michigan in the 2011 Gator Bowl, 52–14, and achieved a number-15 ranking in the final AP poll.[12]

In 2011, Mullen's Bulldogs entered the year ranked number 19 in the nation. A loss to Auburn in the first SEC game of the year hurt the Bulldogs, and they went into the game vs Ole Miss with a 5–6 record. They defeated the Rebels, 31–3, and defeated Wake Forest, 23–17, in the Music City Bowl to finish 7–6 on the year.[13]

In 2012, Mississippi State opened with a win over Jackson State and a win over Auburn, the first time the Bulldogs defeated the Tigers since 2007. Mississippi State had a 7–0 record, and a number 13 ranking, entering a game vs number 1, undefeated Alabama. MSU lost, 38–7, and lost two more, to number 16 Texas A&M and number 9 LSU. MSU defeated Arkansas, and was looking for a fourth straight win over Ole Miss, who was 5–6 going into the game, similar to MSU the year before. The Bulldogs lost, 41–24, and then lost to Northwestern, 34–20, in the Gator Bowl to finish 8–5.[14]

Mississippi State started the 2013 season against number 13 Oklahoma State, losing, 21–3. They defeated Alcorn State, but lost to Auburn, 24–20. They defeated Troy, Kentucky, and Bowling Green, and lost to LSU, South Carolina, Texas A&M, and Alabama, to drop to 4–6, traveling to Little Rock, Arkansas, to battle Arkansas. MSU won, 24–17, in overtime, and was 5–6 entering the Ole Miss game. MSU missed a game-winning field goal to send the game into overtime, and Dak Prescott got a 3-yard touchdown run on 4th and 2, giving Ole Miss the ball up 17–10. Bo Wallace fumbled in the end zone, giving MSU the 17–10 victory, and for the first time in school history, a fourth straight bowl berth. MSU defeated Rice, 44–7, in the Liberty Bowl to finish 7–6.[15]

In 2014, Mullen led the Bulldogs to one of the greatest seasons in school history. He claimed his first Top 10 win at Mississippi State, as the Bulldogs knocked off #8 LSU, 34–29, at Death Valley, allowing them to enter the polls at #12. He followed that up by beating #6 Texas A&M, 48–31, in Starkville, vaulting them to third in the nation. A week later, they beat #2 Auburn, 38–23, which propelled them to the top spot in both major polls (as well as the inaugural College Football Playoff Top 25) —the highest ranking in Mississippi State's history, and the highest that any FBS team in Mississippi had been ranked at that late date in almost half a century. Losses to Alabama and Mississippi ended any hope of a national championship. The Bulldogs finished 10–2 – only the third 10-win season in school [16]history. This netted them an appearance in the Orange Bowl, where they lost to Georgia Tech, 49–34, the third major bowl appearance in school history, after the 1937 Orange Bowl and the 1941 Orange Bowl.

On December 26, 2016, Mullen made SEC history when he became the first football coach in conference history to win a bowl game and still finish with a losing record on the season; Mississippi State finished the season with a 6–7 mark.[17]

On February 27, 2017, Mississippi State Athletic Director John Cohen announced a four-year extension for Mullen through February 2021.[18]

Primarily on the strength of his sterling 2014 season, Mullen was already the third-winningest coach in Mississippi State history, behind only Jackie Sherrill and Allyn McKeen. On October 14, the Bulldogs defeated Kentucky 45-7, giving Mullen his 66th win with the Bulldogs and vaulting him past McKeen to become the second-winningest coach in school history.


On November 26, 2017, Mullen signed a six-year, $36.6 million dollar contract[19] to become the new head coach of the Florida Gators football team.[20] ESPN ranked Mullen's first recruiting class at Florida at 13, an increase of six from the previous season.[21] After a 4–7 campaign the previous year under coach Jim McElwain, Mullen's first Gator squad went 10–3 and finished ranked No. 7 in the AP Poll after a 41–15 victory over then-No. 8 Michigan in the Peach Bowl. He led the Gators to an 11–2 record the following year including a 36–28 win over Virginia in the Orange Bowl.


During the COVID-19 pandemic, Mullen said that he wanted the entire stadium to be packed to "create the best game-day atmosphere we can."[22] The Independent Florida Alligator's Payton Titus reported that 19 players tested positive for COVID-19 days after Mullen's comments.[23] ESPN and CBS later reported that two more players, two unnamed assistant coaches, and Mullen himself all tested positive for the Coronavirus.[24][25]

Head coaching record[edit]

Year Team Overall Conference Standing Bowl/playoffs Coaches# AP°
Mississippi State Bulldogs (Southeastern Conference) (2009–2017)
2009 Mississippi State 5–7 3–5 T–4th (Western)
2010 Mississippi State 9–4 4–4 5th (Western) W Gator 17 15
2011 Mississippi State 7–6 2–6 5th (Western) W Music City
2012 Mississippi State 8–5 4–4 4th (Western) L Gator
2013 Mississippi State 7–6 3–5 T–5th (Western) W Liberty
2014 Mississippi State 10–3 6–2 2nd (Western) L Orange 12 11
2015 Mississippi State 9–4 4–4 T–5th (Western) W Belk
2016 Mississippi State 6–7 3–5 T–5th (Western) W St. Petersburg
2017 Mississippi State 8–4 4–4 T–4th (Western) TaxSlayer* 23 24
Mississippi State: 69–46 33–39 * Mullen left for Florida before the bowl game.
Florida Gators (Southeastern Conference) (2018–present)
2018 Florida 10–3 5–3 T–2nd (Eastern) W Peach 6 7
2019 Florida 11–2 6–2 2nd (Eastern) W Orange 7 6
2020 Florida 7–1 7–1 (Eastern)
Florida: 28–6 18–6
Total: 97–52

Personal life[edit]

Mullen married his wife, Megan, in 2005. Together, they have two children: Breelyn and Canon. Mullen also has a son from a previous relationship, Rowan.[citation needed]


  1. ^ Mink, Nate (July 13, 2020). "Former SU coach Paul Pasqualoni gets a new job (report)". syracuse.com. Retrieved July 14, 2020.
  2. ^ Sallee, Barrett. "Florida hires Mississippi State's Dan Mullen as new head football coach". CBS Sports. Retrieved November 27, 2017.
  3. ^ Smits, Garry. "Dan Mullen learned 'relentless effort' during high school days in New Hampshire". The Florida Times. Retrieved October 30, 2018.
  4. ^ Jensen, Mike. "Dan Mullen's rise at Miss. State has Philly fingerprints". Philly.com. Retrieved October 30, 2018.
  5. ^ Gordon, Carmac. "Mississippi State football coach Dan Mullen's road to No. 1 ranking started at Grymes Hill". SILive.com. Retrieved October 30, 2018.
  6. ^ Thamel, Pete (November 5, 2008), "Apprentice Hopes to Return Utah to B.C.S. Glory", New York Times
  7. ^ Dodd, Dennis (December 10, 2008), "This time, Mullen in head chair to lead program's turnaround", CBS Sports, archived from the original on December 12, 2008
  8. ^ "Mississippi State announces Dan Mullen as head football coach". Mississippi State University Development and Alumni. Retrieved October 30, 2018.
  9. ^ "Football Recruiting Rankings 2009", Scout.com
  10. ^ "Football Recruiting Rankings 2012", Scout.com
  11. ^ "Toughest Schedule. January 20, 2010. NCAA.org" (PDF). Retrieved November 27, 2017.
  12. ^ "2010 Mississippi State Bulldogs Schedule and Results". College Football at Sports-Reference.com. Retrieved October 30, 2018.
  13. ^ "2011 Mississippi State Bulldogs Schedule and Results". College Football at Sports-Reference.com. Retrieved October 30, 2018.
  14. ^ "2012 Mississippi State Bulldogs Schedule and Results". College Football at Sports-Reference.com. Retrieved October 30, 2018.
  15. ^ "2013 Mississippi State Bulldogs Schedule and Results". College Football at Sports-Reference.com. Retrieved October 30, 2018.
  16. ^ "2014 Mississippi State Bulldogs Schedule and Results". College Football at Sports-Reference.com. Retrieved October 30, 2018.
  17. ^ Astleford, Andrew. "RECAP: Mississippi State overcomes sluggish start, needs blocked field goal to beat Miami (Ohio) 17-16 in St. Petersburg Bowl". SEC Country. Retrieved December 28, 2016.
  18. ^ "MSU announces 4-year coach extension". HailState.com. 2017. Retrieved February 28, 2017.
  19. ^ Thompson, Edgar. "UF coach Dan Mullen signs his six-year, $36.6 million contract". OrlandoSentinel.com. Retrieved November 29, 2018.
  20. ^ "University of Florida Selects Dan Mullen as Head Football Coach". Florida Gators. Retrieved November 27, 2017.
  21. ^ "Football Class Rankings-ESPN", espn.com
  22. ^ "Mullen brushes aside criticism for wanting to 'pack Swamp'". AP NEWS. October 12, 2020. Retrieved October 20, 2020.
  23. ^ "Sources: Gators football team has 19 positive COVID-19 cases". The Independent Florida Alligator.
  24. ^ "Florida sees numerous players, two assistants test positive for COVID-19, putting LSU game up in air". CBSSports.com. Retrieved October 20, 2020.
  25. ^ "Gators coach Mullen tests positive for COVID-19". ESPN.com. October 17, 2020. Retrieved October 20, 2020.

External links[edit]