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Dec 2, 2014 9:42 AM

Ole Miss AD: Coach, school agree on new contract

The Associated Press

Mississippi coach Hugh Freeze has reached an agreement with the school on a new contract.

Ole Miss athletics director Ross Bjork confirmed the deal early Tuesday morning, saying an "agreement is in place and we're really excited right now."

Bjork did not immediately disclose terms of the contract, but in November he said both sides were working on a deal that could pay about $4 million per year. Freeze was on the first year of a four-year contract that paid $3 million annually.

The 45-year-old Freeze has led Ole Miss to a 24-14 record, including an 11-13 mark in the Southeastern Conference, over three seasons. The 13th-ranked Rebels have a 9-3 record this season and beat No. 4 Mississippi State 31-17 on Saturday in the Egg Bowl.

Freeze posted a message on Twitter Tuesday morning saying, "Very blessed to be at THE University of Miss & work for and with great people and fans!"

Freeze has engineered a quick turnaround at Ole Miss, taking over after a 2-10 season in 2011 that ended with the dismissal of coach Houston Nutt. The Rebels finished 7-6 in 2012 and 8-5 in 2013 before briefly emerging into the national championship discussion earlier this season with seven straight victories.

Ole Miss lost three straight conference games over a four-week stretch in October and November to fall from College Football Playoff consideration, but bounced back with an emotional victory over Mississippi State on Saturday.

Freeze has a reputation as an outstanding recruiter and his 2013 class was regarded as one of the nation's best. Those players are now sophomores, and many of them like defensive tackle Robert Nkemdiche, left tackle Laremy Tunsil and receiver Laquon Treadwell have already turned into stars.

Freeze's quick success, offensive reputation and relative youth helped make his name a popular one for high-profile openings around the country like Florida. But Freeze is a Mississippi native and has said repeatedly that he is comfortable at Ole Miss.

Freeze was a high school coach for more than a decade in Memphis, Tennessee, before joining the Ole Miss coaching staff under Ed Orgeron in 2005. He led Arkansas State to a Sun Belt Conference championship in 2011 before taking the Ole Miss job.


Follow David Brandt on Twitter: www.twitter.com/davidbrandtAP


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