Reason No. 6: David Lee | Ole Miss Sports

This is a random order. Here’s another reason Ole Miss for Ole Miss improvement in 2011.

The biggest buzz around David Lee this off-season has been Nutt’s announcement when hiring his long-time friend as offensive coordinator is that Lee would call the plays.

Giving up those duties, Nutt says, will allow him to spend more time managing the other aspects of the program.

Lee will also coach quarterbacks, and thats the position that commands the most attention as camp begins today with three players in the mix for the starting job. The working man’s guess is the winner will be Barry Brunetti or Randall Mackey, but Zack Stoudt will get his looks too. There are very few D1 snaps among the candidates, all of them belonging to Mackey.

Lee has had success working with NFL quarterbacks, most notably Tony Romo of Dallas, who Lee helped go from an undrafted free agent in 2003 to the Pro Bowl in 2006.

Nutt is extremely loyal to coaches with whom he’s worked and developed a deep relationship. New defensive backs coach Keith Burns also has a long past with Nutt.

The most important consideration of Lee, Nutt and Ole Miss 2011 is that Lee and Nutt have a history of winning when they’ve been together.

Lee coached with Nutt in 2001, 2002 and 2007 at Arkansas. Those teams compiled a 24-14 mark, 13-11 in the SEC.

The 2002 team won the West, one of Nutt’s two Arkansas teams to reach the SEC title game.

The 2007 Arkansas team was No. 12 nationally in scoring offense, No. 4 in rushing offense.
Nutt was coaching at Ole Miss the next season. Lee was originally set to join Nutt at Ole Miss in 2008 but accepted an NFL opportunity in Miami, where he coached the last three seasons.

It was not surprising to see Nutt pursue Lee for this position, though offense wasn’t the primary offender for the Rebels in last year’s 4-8 disturbance.

Still, Lee inherits not a loaded unit but one with a mixed bag of experience. The quarterback will be brand new, and experience is thin at receiver. The line should be pretty good, and there’s All-SEC potential in the backfield with Brandon Bolden.