COLLEGE STATION, Tx (CBS) What seemed like the inevitable is inching closer to reality.
Texas A&M coach Kevin Sumlin will be fired shortly after Saturday's regular season finale against LSU -- regardless of the outcome of the game -- according to the Houston Chronicle, which cited multiple sources close to to the situation.
Sumlin has not had a winning SEC record since his first season with the program,when the Aggies went 11-2 overall and 6-2 in the SEC in 2012 as quarterback Johnny Manziel won the Heisman Trophy.
Athletic director Scott Woodward said this spring on the "The Paul Finebaum Show" that Sumlin had to be better what he had been in recent years.
"Coach Sumlin knows he has to win," he said. "He has to win this year. He has to do better than he has done in the past."
He hasn't. The Aggies are 7-4 heading into the showdown with the Tigers in Baton Rouge. They blew a 33-point, third-quarter lead against UCLA in the season-opener on national television, and even with a win over LSU, would only get to eight total wins -- the same mark Sumlin has reached every year since 2014.
Not all eight-win seasons are created equal, and last season's November swoon had more to do with injuries to star defensive end Myles Garrett and quarterback Trevor Knight than anything else. But it comes to a point where the old cliche holds true: "You are what your record says you are."
Sumlin's ceiling at Texas A&M is clear. He's an eight-win coach, regardless of the specific scenario.
As to where Texas A&M will turn, USA Today reported earlier this month that the Aggies are prepared to pursue Florida State coach Jimbo Fisher to replace Sumlin, despite Fisher's rather lackluster 4-6 record this season aftter entering ranked No. 3 in the initial AP Top 25.
Whether Fisher is actually interested in moving on from Tallahassee, Florida, remains to be seen. But he does have a relationship with Woodward dating back to Fisher's days as LSU's offensive coordinator, where the two worked together from 2000-04. Fisher was rumored to be interested in the LSU job this time two years ago, when reports surfaced that then-coach Les Miles tenure was scheduled to end shortly after the Texas A&M game. Miles won that game and was retained during the offseason only to be fired one month into the 2016 season. All the while, Fisher remained in Tallahassee.
Will the same thing happen to Sumlin? Even with a win Saturday night, four straight eight-win seasons is probably too much to overcome.