Posted on: February 15, 2012 3:40 pm
Posted by Jerry Hinnen
It's officially official: not only is West Virginia the newest member of the Big 12, the Mountaineers will play a full Big 12 schedule this coming fall and avoid an awkward lame-duck final season in the Big East. (Sorry, Pitt and Syracuse. The 'Eers will send you a postcard.)
Their freedom from the Big East hasn't come cheap, of course, but it nonetheless remains a major feather in the cap of Mountaineer athletic director Oliver Luck. Luck stopped by the CBS Sports Network's Tim Brando Show to talk about the process of making the jump, the "blue-sky opportunity" of competing in their new conference digs, and even an Archie Manning-starring anecdote on raising a famous quarterback. Watch below:
Posted on: December 6, 2011 4:40 pm
Edited on: January 5, 2012 12:57 pm
Posted by Jerry Hinnen
Liberty Mutual Insurance has announced the 25 finalists for the 2011 Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year. Spread across all four divisions of NCAA college football, the 25 coaches were selected via fan voting at CoachOfTheYear.com, as well as (per a National Football Foundation statement) "an objective scoring model endorsed by the College Football Hall of Fame."
"Each coach was among the top 15 in fan votes in his division to qualify for the model, which considers, among other criteria: wins, team penalties, on-field sportsmanship, academic achievement by the student-athletes, and commitment to charitable endeavors," according to the statement.
"Each of the 25 Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year finalists is an example of what it means to be a true leader both on and off the field," said Archie Manning, Chairman of the National Football Foundation and College Football Hall of Fame. Manning spoke to our Eye on NFL Pick-Six Podcast about the award and other topics.
Fans that visit CoachOfTheYear.com can vote daily for their favorite coach between now and Dec. 22. The four winners will be announced the morning of the BCS championship game.
The finalists are:
Football Bowl Subdivision:Each winner will receive a $50,000 donation from Liberty Mutual to the charity or charities of his choice, as well as a $20,000 scholarship grant in their name to their school's alumni association. So, seriously, college football fans: don't forget to vote.
Tags: Archie Manning, Bill Maskill, Bill Snyder, Bobby Petrino, Brady Hoke, Chris Mussman, Coach of the Year, Dabo Swinney, Glenn Caruso, Jerry Hinnen, Jerry Moore, John Wristen, Keith Emery, Lance Leipold, Les Miles, Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year, Liberty Mutual Insurance, Mark Hudspeth, Mark Richt, Mike Gundy, Mike London, Nick Saban, Peter Rossomando, Rob Ambose, Rob Ash, Scott Underwood, Stan Zweifel, Steve Johnson, Tim Beck, Tom Gilmore
Posted on: November 15, 2011 4:44 pm
Edited on: November 15, 2011 4:45 pm
Posted by Jerry Hinnen
When he agreed to co-chair the committee assigned to hire Ole Miss's next head football coach, Rebel legend Archie Manning had to know he was going to encounter some (ahem) passionate opinions from the Ole Miss fanbase about who that committee should select.
But even he might not have been ready for the outpouring of support for a candidate with no professional coaching experience at any level, one who played and graduated from a rival SEC insitutition. Namely: Peyton Manning.
"I've gotten about 20 or 25 e-mails from people in that regard," Archie told the Memphis Commercial-Appeal. And hey, since Peyton's got that neck injury and all, and he's probably already forgotten more about offensive football than most candidates would ever know, why wouldn't he be interested?
"I passed that on to Peyton," Archie said. "He said, 'Just tell them that I'm 0-10 as an assistant for Indianapolis.'"
Oh. Guess he hasn't settled on retiring just yet. But the Commercial-Appeal reported that the younger Manning has "passed on names of several viable candidates." (There's an opening, Ole Miss fans: your school's in need of a new athletic director, too. Peyton sounds like a pefect fit!)
We don't know exactly who those candidates are, and Archie delined to name names. But buzz is building behind a handful of candidates all the same: the omnipresent Mike Leach, Alabama defensive coordinator Kirby Smart, and former Rebel assistant and current Arkansas State head coach Hugh Freeze.
None of those names are quite as big as Peyton's. But we'd think they'd do just as fine a job in Oxford all the same.
Posted on: September 20, 2011 1:49 pm
Edited on: September 20, 2011 4:00 pm
Posted by Jerry Hinnen
We wrote Saturday that after Ole Miss's inexplicable 30-7 loss to Vanderbilt, Houston Nutt had eclipsed Mark Richt as the SEC coach on the hottest seat in the league. Unfortunately for Nutt, the actions of Rebel athletic director Pete Boone since that defeat have done nothing to disprove that assumption.
Monday, Boone took the highly unusual step of speaking at Nutt's Monday press conference, preceding his coach's remarks with some 13 minutes of commentary on the Rebels' predicament. "[Nutt is] committed to correcting some of the issues that he sees are correctable and fixable within the program," Boone said. "And that's what his job is, and that's what he'll be doing."
"I appreciate Pete Boone meeting with the staff and myself, appreciate what he did the last 24 hours," Nutt said (not all that convincingly, in our opinion). "But now bottom line is that it's up to us as coaches, as players to do our jobs."
Boone's appearance at the press conference might be viewed as the dreaded "vote of confidence" that so often signals the beginning of the end for an embattled coach, but Nutt would no doubt take that over Boone's other action in those "24 hours": sending an open letter to Ole Miss fans that asked for support but also called the loss to Vanderbilt "unacceptable." Courtesy of the Clarion-Ledger, an excerpt:
Is there any doubt that "we discussed several areas that needed improvement" is administrator-speak for "I told him to quit embarrassing himself, or else"?
There's two things that might save Nutt's job even in the event the season continues to turn sour: that his back-to-back Cotton Bowl championships remain a nearly-unprecedented feat for the Rebels since the Archie Manning days, and that he has a substantial buyout (thanks to the ever-ingenious machinations of agent Jimmy Sexton) that the Rebels -- already in the midst of a sizable fund-raising campaign to upgrade both the basketball and football facilities -- may not be able to afford.
But it won't help Nutt that Boone may be under a little bit of pressure, too. Though likely only a vocal minority of Ole Miss fans, a group calling itself "Forward Rebels" took out ads in multiple newspapers (including, again, the Clarion-Ledger) after the Vandy debacle claiming that "the Ole Miss administration is the problem":
For a full-size version, click here, but know it's not Nutt the ad is referring to when it says "our leadership has failed us."
Again, that's not to say Boone is under that much heat at this time. But if his coach continues to struggle to the point that either Nutt goes or they both do, we suspect Boone will do his best to find the money for the buyout ... and that the pain of that search likely explains why he's making no secret of his desire to see Nutt turn things around as quickly as possible.
Ad image HT: Friends of the Program.
Posted on: March 30, 2011 12:02 pm
Posted by Jerry Hinnen
Jersey No. 38 hasn't been worn at Ole Miss since 2006, and with good reason: it's the retired number worn by the late Chucky Mullins, the Rebel defender who was paralyzed in a 1989 Homecoming game. It's one of only two numbers to be retired at Ole Miss, the other belonging to Rebel uber-legend Archie Manning.
But Ole Miss announced yesterday that as part of an effort to honor Mullins' memory, the No. 38 will be making an emotional return to the field:
Bestowed on a rising senior defensive player each spring, the Chucky Mullins Courage Award winner had worn the late Mullins' No. 38 jersey from 1990 until 2006, when the M-Club Alumni Chapter passed a resolution for the retirement of the number ...As for who'll wear it in 2011, the Mullins Courage Award winner will be announced at a team banquet April 14--an award that thanks to the jersey number that goes with it will carry even more honor this season (and for many seasons to come) than it already does.
Posted on: September 22, 2010 12:59 pm
Posted by Tom Fornelli
it's been a tough year for Ole Miss. First the school was refuted in its bid to add the mighty Admiral Ackbar to the fold, and then they lost to Jacksonville State in the season opener. Now, after three weeks they're 1-2 and 0-1 in the SEC, seemingly destined to finish at the bottom of the conference standings. Which just wasn't supposed to happen with Houston Nutt running the program.
Nutt was supposed to make the Rebels a contender in the SEC West, and he's done anything but, which is causing many members of the Rebel alliance to question their leader. Though they may want to reconsider their position once they hear what the Grand Poobah of all things Ole Miss, Archie Manning , has to say about Nutt.
Manning expressed compassion for the Rebels' humble beginnings and confidence in Nutt's ability to turn things around.Having Archie Manning in your corner has to feel good for Nutt, but all those happy feelings are washed away quickly when just looking at the Rebels' schedule for the remainder of the year. There's no guarantee they'll beat Fresno State in Oxford this weekend, and then after that they still have road trips to Alabama, Arkansas, Tennessee and LSU.
So it's going to get worse before it gets better.