OXFORD, Miss. - Ole Miss head coach Ed Orgeron announced Friday that he has selected Millsaps College head coach David Saunders to replace Shawn Slocum as linebackers coach on his staff. Slocum is leaving Ole Miss to accept an assistant coaching position with the National Football League Green Bay Packers.
The appointment is pending approval of the Board of Trustees,
State Institutions of Higher Learning.
"I'm fired up to have David on our staff," Orgeron said. "He
brings a wealth of experience in recruiting the state of Mississippi, and
having coached with David in the past, we also share the same philosophies
in coaching defense."
Saunders, who recently completed his third season as head football
coach of the Millsaps Majors, is returning to Ole Miss. Prior to being
named head coach at Millsaps, Saunders had spent four years at the
University of Mississippi, including the first two as Assistant to the
Athletics Director for Recruiting and the final two as Coordinator of High
School and Community College Relations.
"I fully understand the standard and expectations that Ed has for
the program, and that is to compete and win Southeastern Conference
championships," Saunders said. "This is a great opportunity for me and our
family to come back to Ole Miss. We can't wait to get started."
Slocum joined Orgeron's first Ole Miss staff in January of 2005 as
assistant head coach and linebackers coach. During his season with the
Rebels, Slocum coached a highly productive linebacker corps which included
first team All-America selection Patrick Willis, who led the nation in solo
tackles and was sixth in the nation in total tackles.
"Shawn did a fantastic job coaching our linebackers last season,"
Orgeron said. "He was very loyal and we wish him well as his coaching
career moves to the NFL."
"I appreciate the opportunity Coach Orgeron, Chancellor Robert
Khayat, and Athletics Director Pete Boone gave me to work at the University
of Mississippi," Slocum said. "Having spent a year working with Coach
Orgeron, I learned a lot about championship organization. I wish Coach
Orgeron and the Ole Miss family the very best as I look forward to the
opportunity to coach in the NFL with the Green Bay Packers."
During his first stint at Ole Miss, which began in December of
1998, Saunders established an acclaimed recruiting program and was lauded
as one of the top nine recruiters in the nation by Tom Lemming of ESPN.com.
Saunders first joined the Ole Miss athletics staff after working
at the University of Tennessee, where he was responsible for on-campus
Prior to accepting the Tennessee position, Saunders served two
years as assistant football coach and recruiting coordinator at Arkansas
State University in Jonesboro (1996-97). He spent the 1995 season coaching
safeties and special teams at Baylor University in Waco, Texas.
During the 1993 and 1994 seasons, Saunders was the defensive
coordinator and defensive backs coach at Nicholls State University in
Thibodeaux, La. It was at Nicholls State that Saunders coached with
Orgeron, who was the Colonels linebackers coach in 1994. While at Nicholls
State, Saunders coached defensive back Darryl Pounds, who played for the
Washington Redskins of the NFL.
From 1990 to 1992, Saunders coached the defensive line at Georgia
Southern University in Statesboro, and helped lead the Eagles to the 1990
Division I-AA national championship.
From 1984 to 1989, Saunders coached defensive backs and receivers
while serving as recruiting coordinator at Jacksonville (Ala.) State
University. While at Jacksonville State, Saunders coached defensive back
Eric Davis, who earned All-Pro honors in the NFL and played for the 1995
Super Bowl Champion San Francisco 49ers. Saunders also coached receiver
Keith McKeller, who played in three Super Bowls with the Buffalo Bills, and
defensive back Darrel Malone, who played with the Kansas City Chiefs and
Before entering the collegiate coaching ranks, Saunders was an
assistant football coach at Andalusia High School in Alabama from 1982 to
Saunders, a native of Douglasville, Ga., graduated from Auburn
University in 1982 with a bachelor of science degree and was a walk-on
lineman for the Tigers. While at Auburn, Saunders also assisted with the
junior varsity, working with the offensive and defensive lines.
Saunders is married to the former Jan Perry of Andalusia, Ala. The
couple has two children, Riley (15) and Kaylee (13).
Ole Miss Athletics Media Relations
Slocum out; Saunders in
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