FootballScoop is proud to announce that Dave Wommack and Jason Jones (Ole Miss) are the 2014 Defensive Backs Coaches of the Year presented by ProGrass.
Through the first half of the 2014 season, passing against Ole Miss' Landsharks defense was one of the most reckless decisions an opposing offensive coordinator can make. The Rebels started 7-0 thanks to a pass defense that claimed 15 interceptions while creating just as many touchdowns for itself in the form of pick sixes (three) as it allowed.
The Rebels allowed only one touchdown pass through their first five games (166) passes while claiming 10 interceptions. For the season, Ole Miss allowed eight touchdown passes in 365 attempts - no team that faced as many attempts allowed fewer - and snared 19 interceptions. Their 2.375 interception-to-touchdown ratio was the best in college football.
Ole Miss held six opponents to 50 percent completions or fewer, allowed 6.2 yards per attempt (18th nationally) and a 106.98 opponent pass efficiency rating, which rates 13th nationally. Ole Miss also allowed only 85 completions of 10 yards or more this fall, which placed 18th in college football. As a unit, Ole Miss leads the nation in scoring defense (13.8 points per game, more than two points ahead of No. 2 Stanf0rd), places 13th nationally in total defense and seventh in yards per play allowed.
Cornerback Senquez Golson ranked second in the country with nine interceptions and seventh with 17 passes defended, which earned him the distinction of becoming the first Rebel to earn unanimous First Team All-American honors since Michael Oher in 2008. Safety Cody Prewitt was also named a First Team All-SEC honoree.
"What they're doing this year is incredible," Auburn offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee said of the Ole Miss defense this season. "They are generating turnovers at an unbelievable rate, they're scoring touchdowns themselves. ... That's pretty much unheard of."
Wommack, who also serves as the Rebels' associate head coach for defense and defensive coordinator, is in his third year in Oxford. A 35-year coaching veteran, Wommack has previously coached at Arkansas State, Georgia Tech, Southern Miss, South Carolina, Arkansas, UNLV, Southwest Missouri State, Bemidji State and Missouri. Jones, also Ole Miss' co-defensive coordinator, spent five years at Oklahoma State before moving to Oxford in 2012. An Alabama graduate, Jones broke into coaching at his alma mater and has also coached at Tulsa and Rice.
The FootballScoop Coaches of the Year awards presented by ProGrass are the only set of awards that recognize the most outstanding position coaches in college football. The finalists (Greg Brown and Terrell Buckley [Louisville], Vance Bedford and Chris Vaughan [Texas], Kirk Callahan [Central Florida] and Wommack and Jones) were selected based off of nominations by coaches, athletic directors, and athletic department personnel. The prior winners selected this year's winner.
Wommack and Jones will receive their award and be recognized at an event at the AFCA Convention in January.
Previous winners of the Defensive Backs Coach of the Year award are Tim Billings (Wake Forest, 2008), Everett Withers and Troy Douglas (North Carolina, 2009), Chad Glasgow and Clay Jennings (TCU, 2010), Ron Cooper (LSU, 2011), Bill Busch and Kendrick Shaver (Utah, 2012) and Jeremy Pruitt (Florida State, 2013).
1st Nationally - INT-to-TD ratio
Senquez Golson named All-American
1st Nationally - Scoring Defense
7th Nationally - Yards Per Play Allowed
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