SEC: Same Ole Story?

By Doug Kroll - October 25, 2006

There's new blood in Oxford, looking to turn around the team with the worst total record, if you were to add up every season, in the SEC. Ole Miss is now under the direction of former Cincinnati interim head coach Andy Kennedy, who by the way, is a Mississippi native. Kennedy will be asked to turn around a program that only averaged 3,835 fans for their home games last year--the lowest in the SEC.

The Rebels also finished last season 14-16 overall, just 4-10 in the SEC, and had an abysmal 1-9 road record. Quite the situation to be handed. But personally and professionally, the transition for Kennedy has been smooth.

"Personally, it's been seamless," Kennedy said. "I've got a wife and two little girls, and any time you move family, my job doesn't really change, my office changes, the name on my shirt changes, but I do the same thing. But for them, you're concerned about it becuase they're at an age now where they had roots in Cincinnati. So for them to have made a seamless transition, it's been good for me because it's allowed me to put my energies on the job at hand. Professionally it's been great, everyone has been very, very supportive. Our players have handled the transition very professionally, and I really have no complaints. I think we've come a long way, and I know that we're heading in the right direction."

After seeing his players during the preseason, Kennedy commented on who he likes so far.

"Kenny Williams, was expected because he's a Junior College kid (St. Petersburg C.C.)," Kennedy said. "We needed him, he's 6-foot-8, 240 pound, really athletic. I mean, the first day that he walked onto campus he was an SEC player physically, we're just trying to get him up to speed on what he has to do to be successfull at this level. I've also been happy with all three of our freshmen. They all have that dear in the headlights look...I was talking to Bruce [Pearl] and we both said that every freshman in the country goes through that. But we have some kids that come from winning programs, and I think that was very important for us."

I have to admit that I'll be pulling for Kennedy this year, not that I'll be overly bias, but after talking with the coach, he's one of the nicest in the business.

Posted by Doug Kroll at 05:11 PM on October 25, 2006

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