Talk about highs and lows. Southern Mississippi went from 12-2 in 2011 under Larry Fedora to 0-12 in 2012 under Ellis Johnson. One disastrous season was all Johnson got. He was fired and Todd Monken was brought in. He was offensive coordinator at Oklahoma State, the same position held by Fedora before he came to Hattiesburg in 2008.
Southern Mississippi is one of those teams that is always sneaky good, but last year the Golden Eagles were simply superb. Southern Miss set a record for victories by finishing 12-2. Now the bad news. Larry Fedora left to take the coaching job at North Carolina. His replacement is Ellis Johnson, who will try and keep the Hattiesburg Express rolling. The nonconference schedule is challenging, with games against Nebraska and Boise State.
Click the image to enlarge. Thanks to Brent. Poster designed by Old Hat Creative.
Wiz correspondent Greg Laughlin spent Saturday in Annapolis, Md., where Southern Mississippi took on the hometown Navy Midshipmen. The Golden Eagles, behind a 35-point first half, rolled to a 63-35 victory.
There are more photos after the jump and you can view Greg's full gallery by clicking here.
Quarterback Austin Davis leads the high-powered Southern Mississippi offense, which set a team record last season with 478 points. The challenge rests with the defense, which gave up nearly 30 points a game in 2010.
If you want to win a bar bet, here's the question to ask: Southern Mississippi has played in ???? consecutive bowls? (Answer at the end of this paragraph.) Larry Fedora's team scratched out a 7-6 season in 2009, but the finish wasn't to the Golden Eagles' liking as Middle Tennessee State ran over Southern Mississippi, 42-32, in the New Orleans Bowl. Now the Golden Eagles have to replace workhorse running back Damion Fletcher, who rumbled for 1,000-plus yards in four consecutive seasons. The schedule is challenging. Southern Mississippi opens at South Carolina and plays host to Kansas in Week 3. The Golden Eagles close at Central Florida, Houston in Hattiesburg and at Tulsa. Answer: eight.
As a run-up to the start of the season, the Wiz will display one
poster each day until our supply is exhausted.
Then we turn it over to readers, who will vote on the poster of the
year. In the meantime, send your team's poster schedule to jayzuma (at)
Last year, the site
displayed 69 posters. This is poster No. 42 for 2010. Thanks to Kirstin and Joe! Poster designed by Old Hat Creative.
Larry Fedora has plenty to work with as he begins his second season as coach of the Golden Eagles Sixteen starters return, eight on each side of the ball. Quarterback Austin Davis will try to build on his freshman season, when he passed for 23 touchdowns and rushed for nine more. Receiver DeAndre Brown had a spectacular freshman season, catching 67 passes for 1,117 yards and 12 touchdowns. But Brown suffered a gruesome injury to his right leg in the New Orleans Bowl and has not been cleared to participate in contract drills. Thanks to Kirstin and Nicole! Poster designed by Old Hat Creative.