Coach Jason Jones enters his second full season with Ole Miss replacing former Rebel Coach Wesley McGriff, who left the Rebels after the 2012 season to join the New Orleans Saints. You may remember Coach McGriff was a key reason for the recruiting success at Ole Miss as the program’s recruiting coordinator that helped haul in the historic 2013 freshman class.
Finding a person to replace “Crime Dog” would be a tall task.
“If we had to lose Coach McGriff, there was only one guy on my list to replace him. His ties from playing in this conference, his recruiting in Texas, a man of faith which fits with us very well; he’s young and energetic and a tremendous teacher. We had a lot of candidates but he is one we wanted from the start. Coach McGriff had a lot to do with convincing Jason this was a good option and a good move for him. I think we hit a home run there.” Head Coach Hugh Freeze
Jones was a two year starter in the SEC, graduating in 2001 from Alabama. He has coached at Alabama, Rice, and Tulsa and was at Oklahoma State for five years before joining the Rebels coaching staff. Coach Jones was asked what brought him to Ole Miss.
“It’s the SEC, I’m closer to my home and family and even looking from the outside, there is a lot of excitement around Ole Miss. You hear about what they are doing in recruiting and to have a chance to be on this staff and be a part of something special. The SEC is the best conference.” – Cornerbacks Coach Jason Jones
One interesting note about Coach Jones is he has helped take his team to a bowl in every single year he has coached including the Ole Miss team last year.
Coach Jones improved his group at OK State while he was there producing one All-American, three first team All-Big 12 Corners and a pair of Thorpe Award semifinalists. His group from 2009-2012 was the second best team in the nation in forcing turnovers with 130.
In just one year at Ole Miss his defensive backs allowed 31 fewer passing yards per game (215.5 ypg vs 246.5 ypg).
He also knows the importance of recruiting.
“Recruiting is the most important thing you do. It’s a lot easier to call plays when you have the right players. You go out and find the right type of players for your system and find guys that fit around them. You have to develop that relationship, that bond and they will play hard for you. Then we can put them in the right position and then just let them make plays.”
Year two for Coach Jones should be even better with the addition of Kailo Moore and hopefully Tee Shepard, the nation’s number 1 defensive back. This position has quickly gone from a paper thin position to having potentially four starters.
Expect the Rebel Corner’s to “Tee Off” of the opposing Wide Receivers in 2014.