The coaching carousel continues to roll on in college football as the offseason is in full swing. A few days after hiring defensive coordinator Pete Golding away from Alabama, Ole Miss football head coach Lane Kiffin is adding another former Alabama coach to the Rebels staff.
The Rebels are hiring Wes Neighbors III to be the safeties coach. While he began his coaching career at Alabama, Neighbors is coming to Oxford from Maryland where he served in the same role.
Maryland finished 8-5 this past season, their best record since joining the Big Ten in 2014. The Terrapins’ defense allowed an average of 23.2 points per game and 223.3 passing yards per game.
Wes Neighbors began his coaching career with the Crimson Tide in 2011 as a student assistant after playing for Alabama from 2008 to 2011. After finishing his playing career, he became a graduate assistant and analyst for Alabama until 2017. In that span, he was a part of five National Championships with the Tide.
This will be his third stint working with head coach Lane Kiffin as the two previously worked together at Alabama under Nick Saban when Kiffin was the Offensive Coordinator.
Upon his departure from Tuscaloosa Kiffin brought Neighbors along to Florida Atlantic where he served as the safeties coach in the 2018 and 2019 seasons. In that time he helped the Owls win two conference championships.
Neighbors had three other stops before joining the Ole Miss football staff, including coaching the safeties at USF, Louisiana, and Maryland.
As we get deeper into the offseason don’t be surprised if Kiffin continues to make more changes to the Ole Miss coaching staff. The Rebels started the season strong last year but stumbled down the stretch and changes will need to be made in order to keep up with the arms race of the SEC West.