Ole Miss Basketball: Chris Beard officially hired as the Rebels’ new head coach

After weeks of rumors and speculation, Chris Beard was officially named the new head coach of Ole Miss basketball yesterday morning.

Last week we wrote an article detailing how the former Texas Longhorns men’s basketball head coach Chris Beard was the leading candidate to be the next head coach at Ole Miss as reported by ESPN’s Pete Thamel and Jeff Borzello.

Yesterday the university announced that he would indeed be filling the vacancy and taking over a struggling Ole Miss basketball program. Beard interviewed for the Ole Miss job about a week ago and the university said that they would be doing their “due diligence” on Beard before making a decision on a new head coach.

Shortly after the hiring was announced Beard released a statement that said:

“I am honored to be joining the Ole Miss family and excited to get started at this great university. I can’t express how grateful I am to Chancellor Boyce, Keith Carter, and the rest of the search committee for their belief in me to lead this program. I am looking forward to being an active part of the Oxford community. Hotty Toddy!”

Chris Beard was fired by Texas in January after he was arrested on December 12 and charged with third-degree felony assault on a family/household member who would be revealed as his fiancé. The charges were later dropped.

A public introduction for the new Ole Miss basketball head coach will take place Today at 5:00 p.m. CST at the SJB Pavilion at Ole Miss. The event will be open to the public and will also be broadcast live on The Paul Finebaum Show on SEC Network and streamed on SEC Network+.

While there are no doubt many mixed emotions on hiring Beard as the Rebels’ new head coach, one thing is for sure: he is a proven program builder and a top-tier recruiter in college basketball.

I will speak for all of the Rebel basketball fans in saying that hopefully, Beard recognizes the second chance he’s been given and is truly remorseful of his actions that led to his firing from Texas and that the incident will not be repeated.

I will speak for myself (but probably many other Rebel basketball fans as well) when I say it was time for a change in Oxford and Beard may be the right person for the job to make the Ole Miss basketball program not just relevant, but competitive among the SEC’s best teams.