AROUND THE NET: This has been a long time coming and is probably well over due.
In an effort to better keep y’all in the know with all things related to Ole Miss, Oxford High, Lafayette High and Water Valley High athletics, I’m going to attempt to blog more regularly in the form of an “around the net” entry. (more…) (November 28, 2011)
Saturday’s end to the regular season in college football produced several coaching moves on Sunday. As Ole Miss’ search committee, led by Archie Manning, moved forward with the vetting process, several head coaching jobs in college football opened up that may impact the Rebels’ candidate list. (more…) (November 28, 2011, Page 1B)
A change of heart is a common thing for high school players to deal with during the recruiting process leading up to National Signing Day on Feb. 2, but for Philadelphia linebacker C.J. Johnson (6-foot-3, 243-pounds, 4.63 seconds in the 40-yard dash), a recent de-commitment opened the flood gates to some new possibilities and opportunities for schools to sign him.
Johnson broke away from his verbal pledge to Mississippi State for the time being to re-evaluate where he might want to go to school. Although Johnson had been committed to play for the Bulldogs and coach Dan Mullen since the fall of his junior season, the loss of MSU assistant coaches Mark Hudspeth and Manny Diaz in the matter of month made him start to feel like Starkville may not be the best place to go. (January 13, 2011, Page 6)
The opportunity to play on the same college football team for an up-and-coming head coach was something Oxford High standouts Larry Pettis and DeShaun McNeal wanted to explore further in the future. Both Pettis and McNeal were given that opportunity to continue their football careers by Louisiana-Lafayette coach Mark Hudspeth recently and the duo decided that becoming Ragin’ Cajuns was something that suited them best.
McNeal, a 6-foot-2, 205-pound wide receiver, broke Oxford’s single-season receiving record with 81 catches for 1,231 yards and 15 touchdowns this season despite not playing football since he was a freshman. Pettis, a 6-4, 250-pound tight end, also had a great season for the Chargers in 2010 as he caught 29 passes for 409 yards and three touchdowns.
Both felt like playing together under Hudspeth, who got to know the duo when he coached wide receivers at Mississippi State, was the best overall option. (January 4, 2011, Page 7)
An opportunity to return to the coaching ranks at the Division I level for David Saunders has left a void in Ole Miss’ football operations staff today.
Saunders, who served as the administrative operations coordinator under Ole Miss coach Houston Nutt, agreed to become the new cornerbacks coach/assistant recruiting coordinator at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette under coach Mark Hudspeth, who was hired to replace former coach Rickey Bustle earlier this month.
Saunders said he was first contacted by Hudspeth, someone he has known since the two coached at Nicholls State together in 1994, on Sunday and interviewed Wednesday for the position in Starkville. (December 30, 2010, Page 6A)