Since he took over as the head coach of the Mississippi State football team, Jeff Lebby was faced with an urgent situation (as is the new norm in college football hiring and firing cycles that happen this time of year).
Because of the early signing period, Lebby needed to find a coaching staff in a hurry so that he could start to assemble his program as well as start bringing recruits to Starkville to help him reestablish the MSU football program. So, Lebby had to use his coaching connections and offensive pedigree.
That meant connecting with coaches he’s spent time with at other places and leveraging all of his networking opportunities to put a cohesive vision together. Generally speaking, it seems like it worked.
And when Lebby was asked about it at a friendly press conference on Wednesday, he seemed pretty pleased.
“The familiarity from a scheme standpoint, with what we've got going on in the room offensively, will get us off the ground in a hurry,” Mississippi State’s head coach explained.
That’s a bit of a bold statement to make, but it’s exactly what Mississippi State football fans will want to hear. They will want to see his veer-and-shoot system take off as soon as the season gets started.
Mississippi State football: Jeff Lebby’s coaching staff features familiarity and continuity
“That’s from a support staff standpoint too. Just guys knowing what the expectation is, knowing what the shortcuts are, tobe able to go get it installed and get us off the ground. So that's going to be huge for us,” Lebby said.
Of course, that’s what happens when you’ve got a coach who is able to get a coaching staff that features multiple guys that either he has worked with personally or who have worked with folks who have worked with him. Heck, he was able to get a guy who worked with his brother-in-law Kendal Briles at Arkansas in essentially the same offense.
By reuniting the brain trust that really helped this sort of scheme thrive in places like UCF, Ole Miss, Oklahoma (and folks who have taken this system to other places or worked in similarly exciting offenses at places like Arkansas, Arkansas State, Utah State, and North Texas), Lebby should be able to get that side of the ball working sooner rather than later.
The Bulldogs won’t be transformed overnight. That’s not something that can be guaranteed and anyone who is saying otherwise should just chill out for a little bit. But by getting these coaches together with players who fit this offensive system, maybe Lebby can get some success on the offensive side of the ball.
And hey, if the Bulldogs can accomplish more than what they’re expected to, then that’s great and we’ll celebrate then.