OXFORD – Junior quarterback Nathan Stanley is leaving the Ole Miss football program, Rebels coach Houston Nutt said Wednesday evening.
The four-man quarterback competition had not gone well for Stanley this spring. In recent days his number of snaps in practice had diminished, making him appear to be fourth in the race, although Nutt had neither named a starter nor publicly ranked his candidates.
In a school news release Nutt said, “After meeting tonight, Nathan has decided to leave the program. We wish him the best and are going to help him find a new school. I appreciate all he has done for Ole Miss and the type of student-athlete he has been.”
Stanley said early in drills that he did “not necessarily” think his time in the program gave him any sort of advantage in the competition because the Rebels have a new offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach, David Lee.
The three remaining candidates for the starting job are Randall Mackey, Zack Stoudt and Barry Brunetti.
Only Brunetti has played in a Division 1 football game, and his status for the 2011 season depends on an NCAA ruling. He played at West Virginia in 2010 and is seeking a hardship waiver of the NCAA’s one-year residency rule for transfers.
Mackey is a junior college transfer who was redshirted last season. Stoudt is a juco transfer who arrived this semester.
Stanley was the opening day starter and completed 6 of 10 passes for 133 yards and three TDs against Jacksonville State in a 49-48 double overtime loss.
He appeared in only three other games and finished the season 17 for 32 for 261 yards with three touchdowns and one interception.
Parrish Alford/NEMS Daily Journal