Kermit Davis has drawn mixed reviews from Ole Miss fans in the last 24 hours since he was announced as the new Ole Miss basketball head coach.
Thursday morning Ross Bjork officially announced Kermit Davis as the new Ole Miss basketball head coach. It didn’t take long before social media was lit up with comments and ‘Kermit’ memes. Even Ross Bjork and coach Davis got in on the action themselves. Of course, not every Ole Miss fan was having as much fun as others over the new hire. Almost immediately some fans began to criticize the hire.
However, most Ole Miss fans are happy with the hire after they’ve had a chance to look at his numbers. Coach Kermit Davis comes with a resume which speaks for itself and is a very good basketball coach. What he did for the MTSU program is really quite remarkable. Right now, the Blue Raiders are playing in the postseason. The Rebels aren’t for a reason and Kermit Davis is the answer to the problem.
For now, Ole Miss basketball fans are still trying to deal with being stuck with a guy who wasn’t their first choice. Oh well, some of us are old enough to remember when the last head basketball coach was hired. There were quite a few Ole Miss fans who didn’t like him either but they learned to. Some of us believe we’ll all learn to like Kermit Davis too. Of course, Kermit Davis is already up against a lot besides a few ill basketball fans.
First Things First
Ole Miss Rebels Basketball
Kermit Davis is a solid basketball coach and will be inheriting a fairly solid program. However, as with any transition from one coach to the next there will be a learning curve. This will not be any easy gig for Kermit Davis by any means. Of course, this is the SEC and not C-USA. This is where it is fixing to get really real for Davis.
Besides a losing season which resulted the Rebels being the bottom of the SEC there has already been fallout in recruiting. Even before Kermit Davis was officially announced as head coach there was one release request for the 2018 signing class. This leaves the 2018 class with just 2 signees. Needless to say there will be an immediate focus on recruiting. Of course, that’s only after he has his entire staff in place.
From the sound of it much of the MTSU staff will be making the move to Oxford. This is a staff which has recruited very well at MTSU and we can expect they will do a relatively good job on the SEC level. In fact, with The Pavilion, the Ole Miss campus and the City of Oxford it should make their jobs fairly easy right? Not exactly. Our new head coach is going to have his work cut out for him on the recruiting front. Thankfully he brings a successful resume to the table.
On The Court
Despite being a great coach and having a really good record against SEC teams (Most of his SEC wins came against Ole Miss) the competition level just got ramped up. The SEC has suddenly become a very good basketball conference and it appears the talent level is not going to drop off anytime soon. As of this release the SEC was 5-0 in the opening round of 64 in the NCAA tourney.
Next season we have no idea what our record may be when SEC play begins. What we do know is the SEC schedule will be the toughest stretch of games Kermit Davis and his staff have ever coached. Of course, any success Ole Miss has next season will be entirely based upon just how well coach Davis can mesh together what remains of the returning roster.
When you look at the returners Ole Miss has coming back we will retain some key players from this past season. Juniors, guard Terence Davis, forward Bruce Stevens and center Dominik Olejniczak will be all be back. Also coming back will be sophomore guard Breein Tyree and freshman guard Devontae Shuler. With that level of game experience on the roster coach Davis will certainly be off to a good start next season.
It’s hard not to be excited over the Kermit Davis hire. Some of the Ole Miss faithful believe it was a very safe hire and it probably was. Kermit Davis is a good coach, a family man and comes with zero baggage. So of course it was a safe hire. However, when you look at the success he has had over the past ten seasons it was also a smart hire. Still, we have to be cautious about not setting the bar too high right out of the gate. It will take coach Davis a little time to get Ole Miss basketball where we the fans or he the coach will be happy.
When you consider what he is facing as a new head coach in the SEC he has quite the task set before him. Between taking over the worst team in the SEC, recruiting and next seasons schedule he still has the worst critics in the world to deal with. Many of us are already getting our cart way in front of the horse expecting an overnight success story. What Kermit Davis is expected to do by many of us may take several years to accomplish. Of course, until then we should all take a deep breath and be cautious with our optimism.
Then There Is Us
Of course, it will take a little time for coach Kermit Davis to win over some of the Ole Miss fan-base. Right now, it’s tough being a Ole Miss basketball fan. It’s not easy sitting at home watching the NCAA tourney and seeing SEC teams play. However, for Ole Miss basketball to be in the tourney mix again we have to put our faith in our new head coach. Sadly, there are many Rebels fans stuck in the ‘show me state’ when it comes to coach Davis. It’s going to take results to convince many and it will need to happen sooner rather than later.
When it comes to some Ole Miss fans they’ll never accept Davis until he wins a championship or gets into the NCAA tourney. However, from what I have learned of him from the media he is very well liked and respected. He is also considered a home-run hire for Ole Miss by many. Before we wait for next season to get on the KD train, go take a look at his numbers as a head coach and his success. If there is anybody out there who deserved a shot it was Davis. I say we get on board now and see how far he takes us. I believe we see it happen, but how long it takes is the question.
It also isn’t easy playing wait and see. However, the wait for next season will be interesting as we follow Kermit Davis as the new Ole Miss basketball coach. Coach Davis will be very busy getting ready for next season while we are enjoying the next new ‘Kermit’ meme. Hotty Toddy!