BigJim passes on word that David Cutcliffe has been fired as coach at Ole Miss after his first losing season in 6 years with the Rebels. I’m not at all convinced it was the right decision, and the statements from AD Pete Boone and Chancellor Robert Khayat don’t make a lot of sense, in particular this bit from Khayat:
I’ll give you an example. When we hired a new Dean of the School of Education, the provost and I talked about expectations. It’s up to the Dean of School of Education to figure out how to meet those expectations. For me to say who they should hire and what kinds of programs they should implement is wrong. What I can say to him, is “there is a teacher shortage in Mississippi and there is a shortage of well-trained administrators. We need to meet the needs of this state. As Dean of the School of Education, Dean Burrow, we are expecting you to develop a way to do that and we want to see how you are going to do that. It’s not that different than athletics. Organizational rules are transferable from teams to corporations to families. What Pete was asking for was entirely reasonable. David’s response felt right to him and we respect that.
Nor, mind you, does this account square well with accounts I’ve heard of Khayat’s leadership style in other arenas.
BigJim suggests that the Rebels should go for Ty Willingham or Mike Price, both of whom would be great choices. In particular, my inner feelings of karmic justice would be fulfilled by having 2/3 of the black coaches in Division I-A at schools in Mississippi, a point in favor of Willingham. (I’ve also mentioned Memphis coach Tommy West as a strong candidate for the job.)