On the Record

Amid rampant rumors regarding his job security, Ole Miss head coach Houston Nutt appeared on his weekly teleconference Sunday afternoon.

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Nutt, when asked if anything has changed regarding his job status since last night's loss to Kentucky, answered simply. "No," he said, without divulging further.

Nutt said there have been no meetings between himself and the administration, and no meetings are scheduled.

Nutt said he'll likely address the rumors with his players, many of whom have sent him text messages, "in about an hour." Ole Miss is 2-7 overall on the year and 0-6 in Southeastern Conference games.

"Nobody's met, nobody's called," Nutt, in his fourth year as head coach, said. "I don't know. I'm thinking about one thing: Louisiana Tech."

Ole Miss hosts Louisiana Tech Saturday in its homecoming game. The Bulldogs are fresh off a blowout win against Fresno State, a team Ole Miss beat a month ago. The Rebels guaranteed themselves a losing season, the second in as many years, with the loss to Kentucky.

"It was real quiet on the plane (after the loss), the way it should be. I know they're real disappointed and hurt," Nutt said.

Houston Nutt
File Photo

Ole Miss led 13-10 late in the second half against Kentucky, even winning the third quarter for the first time in three weeks 7-0. However, Kentucky scored 20 unanswered points, including two late touchdowns.

The Wildcats were aided by 11 Ole Miss penalties, resulting in 93 yards. Penalties have been a continual problem this season, and have stalled a number of promising drives.

Donte Moncrief was called for offensive pass interference in the first quarter on what would have been a touchdown catch. Ole Miss had to settle for three points instead.

"Let's talk about the first touchdown. I thought that was a really bad call," Nutt said. "The receiver, Donte Moncrief, and the DB were both engaged. There wasn't a major push-off at all. The thing that stood out to me the most was when we were driving, (trailing) 16-13, and we overcome an illegal procedure and overcome a holding and throw the ball to (Nick) Brassell, (and) E.J. Epperson gets called for a hold. You just can't do that.

"We're not good enough to overcome those kinds of mistakes. That was a bad penalty at a bad time. The bottom line, those were the penalties that were crucial at a very critical time. I really thought we were going to win the game when we were moving the ball there. There's just no way you can constantly shoot yourselves in the foot and overcome it. We're not good enough to overcome those kinds of mistakes."

Nutt attributed the recurrent mistakes to the youth of the team, but also pointed the blame at himself. "You can put that one on me," he said of the Kentucky loss.

"I've never been in this situation where you have good concentration throughout the week, and then go in the game (and) not be good enough to finish without a penalty; to play within the rules. That's what's very difficult to overcome," he said.

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