It's Official Now, Fedora to Southern Miss

Within the hour Southern Mississippi University will announce that they have hired Oklahoma State offensive coordinator Larry Fedora to be their new head football coach with a press conference to take place on the USM campus tomorrow.

Fedora replaces longtime head coach Jeff Bower, who resigned under pressure following the regular season. Bower, who had 14 winning seasons in his 17 at the school will coach Southern Mississippi in their bowl game against Cicinnati in the PapaJohn's Bowl on Dec. 22.

Fedora, who has guided the Oklahoma State offense to two record breaking seasons of nearly complete balance on offense, is a native of College Station, Tex. He is 45-years-old and came to OSU when Mike Gundy was named head coach three seasons ago. Gundy and Fedora forged a friendship and coaching bond when the two were at Baylor in 1996 under Chuck Reedy. Following his stint at Baylor coaching receivers, tight ends, and running backs; Fedora was the passing game coordinator at the Air Force Academy.

His career really took off when he became offensive coordinator at Middle Tennessee State and led an offense that broke the majority of school records. He moved on to be offensive coordinator at Florida before joining Gundy at Oklahoma State.

Fedora played his college football at Austin College in Sherman, Tex. where he was an All American in 1983 and helped lead his team to the 1981 NAIA national championship.

A master in the spread offense that has come up with his own version of the spread, Fedora is very intelligent, but is also able to communicate with players and has been a strong recruiter.

His offense at Oklahoma State this past season led the Big 12 in total offense and rushing offense. With one game to go in the regular season the Oklahoma State offense was averaging 256-yards a game in both rushing and passing.

As for what will happen from this point, it is not expected that Fedora will take any fulltime assistants with him from Oklahoma State. He has a long list of college coaches he knows and friends in the business. He has coached with OSU offensive line coach Joe Wickline at his last three stops (OSU, Florida, and Middle Tennessee), but Wickline has repeatdly said he is looking to stay at Oklahoma State.

Our source in Hattiesburg said that Fedora plans to make himself available to Oklahoma State to assist in their bowl preparations for the Insight Bowl on Dec. 31 against Indiana. Obviously, it will be up to head coach Mike Gundy what role Fedora would play. Gundy could use the game as a trial for running the offense in Fedora's absence or as a final go round with a good friend and a strong offensive staff working together.

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