A week after Syracuse officially dropped from bowl contention, 24 hours after senior day, now -- now -- they decide to fire Greg Robinson.
Like everything else about the Robinson era, this made no sense. AD Daryl Gross explained the firing as if Robinson had been some sort of serial killer.
"We just thought at this point the community could relax," he said.
What exactly does Gross gain by firing Robinson now, especially since the coach will stay for the final two games of the season? Something must have gotten into ADs' coffee this year. Robinson became the sixth coach to be fired/resign during the season.
Gross does have his first official candidate. Illinois offensive coordinator Mike Locksley told me Sunday night, in a roundabout way, that he would be interested.
"Obviously being a head coach is an ultimate goal of mine," Locksley said, "whether it's a BCS or non-BCS school. I'm not in a hurry."
Locksley said he had not been contacted, although his name has circulated as a possible candidate for a while. The 48-year-old is in his fourth season under Ron Zook. Before that he was with Zook at Florida making a reputation as one of the nation's best recruiters. Locksley is responsible for opening up the Washington D.C. area to Illinois. They snatched current stars defensive back Vontae Davis and receiver Arrelious Benn from the area.
Illinois signed Locksley to an extension that runs through the 2012 season after West Virginia inquired about interviewing late last year. The coach makes approximately $500,000 per season, making him one of the highest paid coordinators in the country.
Syracuse already has employed headhunter Chuck Neinas. Former Raiders and USC coach Lane Kiffin is known to be interested and has ties to Gross, a former USC associate AD. The name of New Orleans offensive coordinator Doug Marrone has surfaced as well. Marrone played at Syracuse from 1983-85. He currently oversees the NFL's No. 1 offense.