Auburn football head coach Hugh Freeze downplayed the Tigers’ October 21 matchup with Ole Miss when asked about it directly by Rivals’ Brian Stultz, a personal friend of the Oxford, Mississippi-born HC — particularly because Freeze’s Liberty Flames traveled to Vaught Hemingway Stadium on November 6, 2021, to get walloped by the Rebels 27-14.
“Jill and I actually talked about that because that removes the ‘Hey, this is your first time playing Ole Miss since your departure from there,'” Freeze prefaced before saying, “And so I think it’s very helpful.”
Despite his controversial departure from Ole Miss, Freeze reflected fondly to Stultz about his time coaching his hometown Rebels.
“I have a lot of friends there and a lot of people that I think appreciate the good things that we did,” Freeze said. “And certainly wish that some things were different at the ending, just like I do.”
Auburn football head coach was embraced by Ole Miss after controversy
As Stultz recalls, the people of Oxford and Rebels fans everywhere offered support to Freeze as he went through a controversy that undoubtedly affected his mental health and his entire family’s as well.
“I personally saw how much love there was for Freeze, even in the aftermath (of his scandal),” Stultz prefaced before saying, “Those who care about the man stood up for him when it was the hardest and when he was worried if he would ever coach again.”
Freeze and Oxford is a love story that seems undeniable. Perhaps before it is all said and done, the hometown kid can return home to right the wrongs of his first tenure.
This isn’t to say that Freeze is on the hot seat; though comments about not focusing on games until half an hour beforehand isn’t exactly the most confidence-inspiring quote. But a Lane Kiffin firing is already being spoken about, so Ole Miss could be looking for a stabilizing force sooner than later.
And based on how the 2020s decade has gone thus far on the Plains, there’s always a dormant flame ready to ignite the Auburn football head coaching seat at all times.