After five seasons as Ole Miss’ women’s basketball coach, Matt Insell is leaving Oxford.
The two sides decided mutually to part ways this week, according to a release from Ole Miss on Friday afternoon.
“Coach Insell inherited a very difficult situation in 2013, and we appreciate his focus and hard work over the last five years,” athletic director Ross Bjork said in the release. “In our final analysis, Coach Insell and I agreed that the program needs new leadership. Coach Insell will be a coach for a long time in the future, and we wish him the best as he moves forward.”
Ole Miss has a proud women’s basketball program that includes 17 NCAA Tournament appearances and five Elite Eights. However, Insell failed to lead the Rebels to the tournament in five seasons as coach, and only twice qualified for the women’s NIT. The Rebels last made the tournament during the 2006-07 season, when Carol Ross led them to the Elite Eight.
“Ole Miss Women’s Basketball has a deep history of success, and we will search the nation for the best coach,” Bjork said in the release. “We have a great foundation in place, and I know we can compete at the highest level.”
Insell finished his tenure in Oxford at just 18-62 in SEC play. This run of frustrating play also comes at a time when in-state rival Mississippi State is thriving as one of the best teams in the country. The Bulldogs were national runners-up last year and enter the 2018 postseason with a perfect 30-0 record.
Ole Miss went 1-15 in conference play this season, and its season ended with a loss to Missouri in the second round of the SEC Tournament on Thursday.