/Question Has Orgeron evolved that much

Question Has Orgeron evolved that much

LSU is certain that Orgeron has matured and grown as a coach in the past decade. LSU isn’t the only one. Bruce Feldman, a respected college football writer, tweeted: “Happy For Ed Orgeron… Never met anyone who works harder. He is more than a great recruiter. He has come a long way since USC and OM. From his first team meeting with his famously ripped-off shirt to his scrimmaging of his team during a delay in the weather to the final decision that cost him his job and the 2007 Egg Bowl, his tenure at Ole Miss was like an episode of a sitcom. Coach O was a parody of his self at Ole Miss. His last Ole Miss team finished 0-7 in SEC when they entered the Egg Bowl on November 23, 2007. Remember? That Friday was Starkville’s Egg Bowl. A few days before, I had written a column for The Clarion-Ledger stating that it was time to make a change at Ole Miss. This Orgeron was in the third year of a 4-year contract and clearly wasn’t doing the job. That opinion could have been based solely on his record. Ole Miss had only won one game against a team with a winning record in its three previous seasons. Listen: The Rebels were last in the SEC for scoring offense, scoring defense and turnover margin. They also ranked last in total defense, rushing defense, rushing defense, total defence, time of possession and kickoff coverage. They were eleventh among 12 teams in rushing offense and passing efficiency. They were the only league team without an SEC win. There was more. His decisions on and off the field were not logical. It was almost as if he could flip a coin or read tea leaves to make decisions. The column about Orgeron was my most personal. My email blew up. My office phone rang incessantly. Amazingly, Rebel fans were divided over the issue. Many thanked me for the column. Others hoped I would die a slow, agonizing death. With 10 minutes left, Ole Miss led 14-0. Sylvester Croom’s team was beaten by Ole Miss for the first 50 minutes. I received emails from Ole Miss fans shaming me for my column that they had written earlier in the week. It happened. Orgeron was facing fourth and one at the midfield, leading 14-0. He left his offense on field. The Liberty Bowl official said that Orgeron was just going to try and pull them offsides. You all know what happened next. The State crowd went insane, despite being almost silent up until that point. State won the game 17-14. After the game, I asked Croom what he thought of Ole Miss’s plan to take it on fourth-and-one. Croom replied, “I thought Christmas had arrived early.” My email was exploding again by the time I returned to the press box. Many of these emails were from Ole Miss supporters apologizing to me for previous emails. It was impossible to make this up. Officials from Ole Miss had a decision to make before they went into the game. Orgeron won it for them. You can read all Rick Cleveland’s Sports Daily blog entries. To support this work, you can make a regular donation to the Spring Member Drive today. This will allow us to continue important work such as this one. Our reporters give a human face to policy’s impact on everyday Mississippians by listening more closely and understanding their communities. To ensure that our work is aligned with the priorities and needs of all Mississippians, we are listening to you. Click the button below to let us know what you think.