Former NC State Offensive Coordinator Noel Mazzone didn’t last long at Ole Miss. He was fired today after leading the Rebels “with one of the nation’s worst offenses.”
Ole Miss must have really hated NoRedZone as he still has two guaranteed years on his three year contract that pays him about $230,000 annually.
Ole Miss ranked 111th in Division I-A with 281.7 total yards per game, averaged an SEC-worst 13.5 points and 73 yards rushing, and ran for a combined 48 yards in ending a 3-8 season with consecutive losses to Arkansas, LSU and Mississippi State. The Rebels rushed for 10, 7 and 31 yards in their final three games.
Most Wolfpack fans were clamoring for NoelRedZone’s head last season, but Chuck Amato was put in a precarious position in the offseason when the Wolfpack unexpectedly lost Doc Holliday and Reggie Herring to Florida and Arkansas, respectively. Mazzone made Amato’s life a little easier by finding a nice deal elsewhere and not putting the pressure on Chuck to be fired in a move that would have created more negative perception about the Wolfpack program in the press.
Mazzone was ‘famous’ for an inconsistent offense in Raleigh that struggled to score touchdowns in the red zone. These struggles helped produce a disappointing 7-5 record in Philip Rivers’ & Jerricho Cotchery’s senior regular season with an offense that also included Tramain Hall, TA McLendon and a host of other talented players.
In 2004, the red zone performance of Mazzone’s offense improved, but his inability to call plays that Jay Davis could execute was a key component in the Wolfpack’s turnover problems plaguing the team in almost every loss. Davis threw key (multiple) interceptions in games against Ohio State, Georgia Tech, UNC-CH, and Clemson that could have easily been avoided with prudent play calling.
Mazzone’s firing is also being discussed here, where a seemingly knowledgeable fan has shared the following:
Ole Miss hired their head football coach- Ed Orgeron- as a backup after Dennis Erickson fell through. They apparently had all the paper work done with Erickson but it fell through at the last minute. Erickson was going to hire Orgeron as his Defensive Coordinator. When Erickson backed out Ole Miss panicked and hired Orgeron as head coach. Orgeron was voted top recruiting @#%$’t in the country before he was hired while at USC. But the problem was he is rumored to have some drug and assault charges from when he was younger. To combat the risk they were taking hiring Orgeron the AD wanted to hire an OC that could potentially take over as Head Coach temporarily if Orgeron failed.
The AD hired Mazzone to a three year deal and Orgeron has never liked him. He was was fired about three games ago and has had lame duck status ever since. They have been seen arguing on the sidelines and supposedly Mazzone was told to leave at halftime and not come coach the 2nd half against Miss. St. Ole miss had about 38 yards of total offense in the 2nd half.