Hopson leaving USM for similar post at Ole Miss

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, February 17, 2004

[2/14/04]OXFORD Southern Miss defensive backs coach Jay Hopson has left to become the defensive assistant coach and recruiting coordinator at Ole Miss.

Hopson, a Warren Central graduate, was a defensive back for Ole Miss from 1988-91. He was a four-time Academic All-SEC honor roll selection and was named to the Verizon/CoSIDA District VI Academic All-America team as a senior in 1991.

Hopson would fill a defensive position which became available when Jim Knowles resigned to become head coach at Cornell University. Ole Miss head coach David Cutcliffe said Hopson’s defensive responsibilities will be specifically outlined by next week.

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“I’m extremely excited to be returning to Ole Miss,” Hopson said. “Coach Cutcliffe is a wonderful person and I can’t wait to coach for him. It will be good to be back in Oxford.”

Hopson has served the last three years as the defensive backs coach at Southern Miss. His first season saw the Golden Eagle secondary lead Conference USA in pass efficiency defense and finish the season No. 14 in the nation. The 2002 Golden Eagles led the nation for fewest passing touchdowns allowed (6) and finished No. 4 nationally in pass efficiency defense, while USM led C-USA in pass defense and finished No. 5 nationally in 2003.

He contributed to a USM defense that finished in the top 15 in scoring defense three years in a row 8th in 2001, 15th in 2002, and 14th in 2003.