'Just Getting Started!' Chris Beard Remaining at Ole Miss Amidst Arkansas Rumors

The Ole Miss Rebels were able to hold onto their men's basketball coach in Chris Beard, he announced on Friday.
Mar 5, 2024; Athens, Georgia, USA; Mississippi Rebels head coach Chris Beard
Mar 5, 2024; Athens, Georgia, USA; Mississippi Rebels head coach Chris Beard / Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

The Chris Beard era with the Ole Miss Rebels appears to be continuing.

Amidst rumors that Beard was tied to the head coaching position with the Arkansas Razorbacks (one that was recently vacated by Eric Musselman who took the USC Trojans job) he announced on X Friday that "great times" are ahead in Oxford, and the Rebels are "just getting started." You can view his post here.

Beard replaced former Ole Miss head coach Kermit Davis for the 2023-24 season after Davis' tenure disentegrated down the stretch, resulting in a 12-21 (3-15 SEC) record in his final season.

Beard and the Rebels failed to reach the NCAA Tournament in his first year in Oxford, finishing the campaign with a mark of 20-12 overall and 7-11 within the Southeastern Conference. Ole Miss was also eliminated in its first game of the SEC Tournament, falling to the Texas A&M Aggies 80-71 in Nashville.

The Rebels turned down an NIT invitation following the SEC Tournament with Beard citing "timing" as the reason to proceed with the offseason and recruiting efforts.

"Firstly, I have a lot of experience and respect for the NIT," Beard said. "When I was with Coach [Bob] Knight, I learned the history of the NIT and everything it's done for college basketball and the history of the game all the way up until the current model. Simply, I think timing is everything and the timing's just not right for us to continue the season in any of these tournaments."

The Rebels now shift their focus to Year 2 of the Beard era, and he will look to return to the NCAA Tournament, a level he has frequented during his career. Beard has a record of 10-4 in NCAA Tournament games, and he also led Texas Tech to the Final Four in 2019.

John Macon Gillespie


John Macon Gillespie is the publisher of The Grove Report and has experience on the Ole Miss beat spanning five years.