Tom Allen has done a tremendous job at Indiana and it might just be taking him to college football’s promised land.

With the dismissal of Derek Mason on Sunday, Vanderbilt is being linked to the Indiana head coach. ESPN’s Adam Rittenberg has Allen as his first name to replace Mason with the Commodores.

Allen is in his fifth season at Indiana and has a 23-21 all-time record as head coach; Indiana is 0-2 in bowl games under Allen. But it is the job he’s done the past two years that has impressed many nationally, turning Indiana into not just a solid program but one that is among the best in the nation.

Currently, Indiana is No. 12 in the nation for the CFP and 5-1, their only loss coming two weeks ago at mighty Ohio State.

The idea of Vanderbilt would likely be intriguing for Allen. The SEC, after all, is the holy grail of college football. It is also adjacent to a more fertile recruiting ground as well as being located in the destination city of Nashville. This could make Allen’s job easier in terms of bringing in blue-chip recruits, the kind he’s never been able to land consistently at his current job.

Despite these limitations, Allen has found success at Indiana, not an easy place to recruit, and a program that has historically been a bottom-feeder in the tough Big Ten. There are a lot of reasons why Allen is intriguing for Vanderbilt and more than a few why he is likely to cast a long look at the program in return, should they actually reach out to him.

This is one to watch.