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Inside WRs Coach Dave Nichol Leaving Mississippi State

Coach Dave Nichol is parting ways with the Mississippi State football program after spending the last two seasons as an inside wide receivers coach.

Mississippi State inside wide receivers coach Dave Nichol will be taking his talents to the west coast next season, according to a report from 247Sports.

Nichol, who has spent the past two seasons developing his players on Mike Leach's staff, has taken a job at USC. He will be joining newly-hired head coach Lincoln Riley, who left Oklahoma Sooners earlier this week. Nichol and Riley have a history of working well together. They both spent 2003-2005 on the Texas Tech staff-- Nichol was a graduate assistant, while Riley served as a student assistant. They also worked together at East Carolina from 2012-2014 before going their separate ways.

Although it doesn't seem shocking that Nichol has chosen to reunite with Riley, his connection with Leach was one-of-a-kind. His first coaching stint at Texas Tech from 2003-2005 was under the leadership of Leach. Nichol returned to work with Leach as an outside wide receivers coach at Washington State in 2016. Before the 2017 season began, he started coaching inside wide receivers. He stayed in that position with the Cougars until the end of the 2019 season. When Leach transitioned from Washington State to Mississippi State, he brought Nichol with him. Both coaches started their respective jobs in the SEC together. 

During his two years at MSU, Nichol has helped develop one of the best groups of receivers in the country. The Bulldogs have the best passing offense in the SEC and the third-best in the nation with 385.7 yards per game. Nichol's standout inside receiver Jaden Walley finished the season with 610 receiving yards and six touchdowns. Veteran Austin Williams added 543 yards and four touchdowns-- three of which came in a single half against Tennessee State-- in his career-best season. Jamire Calvin and Christian Ford also made strides on the team and are expected to play bigger roles next season.

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Nichol will be missed, but some fans are already speculating about who will take over his position. Many are calling for current University of Utah wide receivers coach Chad Bumphis to make his return to Starkville. Bumphis played for Mississippi State from 2009-2012 and finished his career in maroon and white with 2,270 yards and 24 touchdowns on 159 receptions. His Utes have had a successful 2021 season and captured the programs' first-ever Pac-12 championship on Friday night.