It's official: Ole Miss announces it has fired Matt Luke, AD releases statement explaining decision
Ole Miss Athletics Director Keith Carter announced that he has fired Matt Luke as the head coach of the Rebels program.
“After evaluating the overall trajectory of our football program, we did not see enough momentum on the field and determined a change is necessary in order for our student-athletes to compete at the highest level,” Carter said in a statement released by the university. “While improvements were evident in certain aspects of the program, we are judged ultimately by our record, and, unfortunately, we did not meet the standard of success that we expect from our program. We will always be grateful to Coach Luke for his leadership, particularly from a recruiting, academic and overall culture standpoint. At the same time, winning is important, and we know that we can compete for championships at Ole Miss.
“A search is underway to find a new head coach who can build a complete program that attracts top talent, develops them as young men and sustains a winning mentality. We will be looking for the leadership, energy and commitment to excellence necessary to compete in the Southeastern Conference and galvanize our passionate fan base.”
Luke finished his Ole Miss coaching tenure with a 15-21 overall record, including 6-18 in the SEC. The Rebels fell to 4-8 on the season after losing to Mississippi State in the Egg Bowl.
Luke became the permanent head coach after being the interim in the 2017 season. Hugh Freeze was removed before the season, and Luke was named the interim head coach. The Rebels finished 6-6 in 2017, 5-7 in 2018 and 4-8 in 2019.
“I want to thank Coach Luke for his devotion to Ole Miss,” Carter said. “His integrity, class and dedication to this program and our student-athletes is unsurpassed, and we will always appreciate how he stepped up at a time when his university needed him the most. We wish him the very best, and he will always be a cherished member of the Ole Miss family.”
Luke played offensive line at Ole Miss from 1995-98, and he was an assistant coach for the Rebels multiple times throughout his coaching career.