OXFORD – Former Daily Journal all-area quarterback Maikhail Miller is leaving Ole Miss.
Rebels head coach Hugh Freeze announced Miller’s decision on Tuesday at the end of a university news release that confirmed the signing of defensive lineman Fadol Brown, a transfer from Florida International University.
Miller starred at Itawamba AHS as a high school senior in 2010 while being recruited by former Ole Miss coach Houston Nutt. He delayed his enrollment until January of 2012 and was a freshman last season, Freeze’s first as head coach.
Miller, though, was unable to climb the depth chart and ended this season’s spring drills No. 3 on the depth chart behind starter Bo Wallace and Barry Brunetti, the primary back-up.
The Rebels also signed two four-star quarterbacks as part of their heralded top 10 2013 signing class.
‘A good move’
Contacted Tuesday night, Miller said he began thinking about making a move in the spring. He discussed things with his parents and reflected on the possibility of a transfer this summer while playing baseball in the Cotton States League at New Albany.
“We just thought it was a good move,” he said.
Freeze, he said, agreed with Miller’s decision.
“He thought it was a good decision. We came to an agreement,” Miller said.
Freeze recruited Miller when Freeze was coach at Arkansas State prior to taking the Ole Miss job.
Miller has several destinations in mind but did not discuss any names. He says he’s not had contact with any other schools.
Miller gained a great deal of practice time in the spring as Wallace sat out after shoulder surgery. Miller (6-2, 234) showed himself to be an effective, bruising runner, but both he and Brunetti were inconsistent in a passing game where key offensive linemen and receivers were also held out.
In other quarterback news, the Commercial Appeal of Memphis, Brunetti’s hometown newspaper, reported that Brunetti was arrested in May after a traffic accident.
Brunetti was charged with misdemeanor possession of drug paraphernalia, and former Ole Miss player Randall Mackey, with Brunetti at the time, was charged with misdemeanor simple assault after he allegedly pushed a police officer.
The car involved in the accident belonged to current Ole Miss football player Nick Brassell, though Brassell was not charged, according to the report.
Freeze said last week that Brassell is unlikely to gain academic eligibility, which would create further depth issues in the Rebels secondary.