Ole Miss' Houston Nutt Interested In Kansas Job?

Denny K.Correspondent IDecember 7, 2009

OXFORD, MS - OCTOBER 10:  Coach Houston Nutt of the Mississippi Rebels watches from the sidelines in their game against the Alabama Crimson Tide during their college football game at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium on October 10, 2009 in Oxford, Mississippi.  (Photo by Dave Martin/Getty Images)
Dave Martin/Getty Images

So, you thought when Mark Mangino resigned that the circus surrounding the Kansas Jayhawks' program was over?  Wrong.

Original reports out of Lawrence after Mangino resigned was that Lew Perkins, the Kansas athletic director, was targeting Standford's Jim Harbaugh.  Those reports fizzled as it came out that Harbaugh was waiting for an NFL gig. 

Then it was announced that Perkins was flying to New York City to interview Buffalo's Turner Gill. This news made sense. Gill is an excellent coach and not a reach for Kansas to hire. The prospect of the respectable Turner Gill becoming the next coach at Kansas got rained on this afternoon, however.

An Arkansas radio station and the Kansas City Star are now reporting that Ole Miss football coach Houston Nutt is on Perkins' short list and that Nutt is actually interested in the Kansas job.

Nutt has been at Ole Miss for two years now, after coaching at Arkansas for 10 years.  He has won the SEC coach of the year award three times (2001, 2006 and 2008) and taken the Rebels to Cotton Bowl berths in each of the last two seasons. 

His interest in coaching in the Big 12 is possibly partly sentimental, as he was a quarterback for the Oklahoma State Cowboys close to 30 years ago.

This news strikes me as bizarre. Nutt is making more at Ole Miss, over two and a half million, than Mark Mangino did at Kansas before he got fired. Also, not many people in college football would think Kansas is a better job than Ole Miss. 

That said, Nutt has a history of involvement in nutty decisions and betrayed loyalties.  Pardon the pun. His last years at Arkansas had more drama than a Lifetime channel movie. No doubt, as this news breaks in Oxford, Mississippi, Nutt is going to find himself the center of drama once again.  One almost has to wonder if he likes it that way.

Nutt is a big name and it would be a hire for Perkins that would create lots of interest at Kansas. That said, if you are a Jayhawks fan you really have to wonder how long Nutt would last at Kansas before he inexplicably picked up and moved on again? One year? Two Years? We'll have to wait and see.