Matt Luke will serve as Ole Miss’ interim coach after Hugh Freeze’s surprising resignation Thursday night.
Luke, who worked as a co-offensive coordinator/offensive line coach at Ole Miss, will inherit a difficult situation in Oxford. A dark cloud was already parked over the program after recent NCAA trouble. Now the uncertainty is ratcheted as the Rebels begin a new season.
Here are five things to know about Luke:
1. Matt Luke is a graduate of Ole Miss
The native of Gulfport, Miss., earned letters in four seasons as a center with the Rebels from 1995-98. He started in 33 career games, and he was a team captain in 1998.
2. Matt Luke knows the SEC
In addition to his time with Ole Miss, Luke worked as the tight ends coach and a recruiting coordinator for Tennessee from 2006-07. Beyond the SEC, he was Duke’s offensive coordinator/running game coordinator and offensive line coach from 2008-11. He served as a student assistant coach at Ole Miss in 1999. He graduated from the school with a degree in business administration in May 2000.
3. Matt Luke is well-grounded in Oxford
Luke has been on Ole Miss’ staff since Freeze’s arrival before the 2012 season. He saw the Rebels rise under Freeze, who posted a 39-25 record in five seasons in Oxford. The highlight of the tenure came in the 2015 season, when Ole Miss beat Oklahoma State in the Sugar Bowl to cap a 10-3 season.
4. Matt Luke helped develop strong NFL-caliber talent
Luke oversaw the development of offensive linemen Laremy Tunsil and Fahn Cooper. The Miami Dolphins selected Tunsil as the No. 13 overall pick in the 2016 NFL Draft. The San Francisco 49ers took Cooper in the fifth round, No. 174 overall, the same year.
5. Matt Luke has a strong Ole Miss family history
Luke’s father, Tommy, played as a defensive back at Ole Miss in the 1960s. His brother, Tom, was a quarterback at the school from 1989-91. Tom serves as an assistant athletics director for player development on Ole Miss’ staff.
Hugh Freeze resignation coverage from SEC Country
- Ole Miss coach Hugh Freeze resigns
- Ole Miss names Matt Luke interim after Hugh Freeze resigns
- Report: Ole Miss found ‘at least one’ call from Hugh Freeze to female escort service
- What Ole Miss AD Ross Bjork and Chancellor Jeff Vitter said after Hugh Freeze’s resignation
- Internet goes nuts over shocking details of Hugh Freeze’s resignation at Ole Miss
- Ole Miss recruits react to Hugh Freeze resignation
- 6 coaches who make sense to replace Hugh Freeze as the next Ole Miss coach
- Matt Luke: 5 things to know about the new Ole Miss football coach
- Hugh Freeze resigns: Ole Miss-NCAA war was always going to end this way