"Charlie is an outstanding coach and recruiter and we're excited to have him join our staff," Malzahn said. "He's very familiar with Coach Ellis Johnson having coached together on two different staffs, which will be a tremendous asset to our defense. He is a true professional and one of the class guys in college coaching."
Harbison and Ellis Johnson worked together previously at Alabama in 2000 and at Mississippi State in 2007.
"I'm looking forward to joining Coach Gus Malzahn's staff at Auburn," Harbison said. "Having coached against Auburn on several occasions, I'm very familiar with the great success and tradition associated with the program. This is a tremendous opportunity for me and my family."
Harbison, who is 53 years old, played college football at Gardner-Webb from 1978-81. After a short career in pro football with the Buffalo Bills as well as the United States Football League, he began a coaching career that has included stops in the SEC at Alabama, LSU and Mississippi State.
He has also coached in the Arena Football League and the World League of American Football.
Harbison came to Clemson in 2009 for his second coaching assignment with the Tigers, making the move to the ACC school from Mississippi State.
In 1984-95 Harbison was an assistant coach at Gardner-Webb. His next coaching job was at East Lincoln High in 1988. He coached for the Charlotte Barons in 1990 and at Lincolnton High in 1991 before returning to Garder-Webb in 1992-93.
He was with the AFL's Charlotte Rage in 1993, the University of Texas-El Paso in 1994 and began his first run at Clemson in 1995, staying there for three seasons.
His first SEC stop was from 1998-2000 at Alabama and then he spent the next two seasons at LSU. He was at Alabama from 2003-2006 before moving to Mississippi State in 2007. From there he moved to Clemson in 2009 where he helped the 2011 Tigers win their first ACC title in two decades.
In addition to coaching defensive backs, he has also worked with wide receivers at the college level.
At Clemson in 2009 and 2010 the secondary he coached was ranked in the top 26 nationally in pass efficiency defense. One of his players, safety DeAndre McDaniel, was a first team All-American both of those seasons. McDaniel led the Atlantic Coast Conference and was ranked third nationally in interceptions with eight in 2009.
The 2009 Clemson team finished the season with 21 interceptions, which ranked fifth nationally and fifth in CU's school history.
Also during his time at Clemson, Harbison coached cornerback Coty Sensabaugh, who was drafted by the Tennessee Titans.
A native of Shelby, N.C., Harbison graduated from Gardner-Webb College. A two-sport star in football and track on the college level, he was a free-agent signee of the Buffalo Bills following his senior season.
Harbison is married to the former Tammy McCluney and they are the parents of Charlie, Stedman, Masai and Msiba.
Malzahn has announced three on-the-field coach hires so far for his staff--Harbison Johnson and offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee.