Ole Miss football coach Hugh Freeze talked publicly for the first time since Chad Kelly's arrest during today's press conference in Atlanta for the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl, in which Mississippi will meet TCU on Dec. 31.
Freeze told reporters that he would wait until after Kelly's Jan. 5 court date before making a decision on Kelly's future. Kelly signed with Ole Miss last week, just days before his arrest early Sunday morning.
Here is the transcript of the interview, via insideolemisssports.com:
Statement on Chad Kelly:
It’s like I tell him every day when he’s calling and texting me, ‘I will deal with you when I get ready to deal with you, and that will be after I gather everything and see what the court date after Jan. 5, what happens with that.’
I just want to be sure. When you’re dealing with a kid’s future … I know everybody has their opinion. None of the opinions really matter other than what’s best for the program first, the kid second. For me to do anything other than wait for all the facts and the total truth … because everything that’s out there is not accurate. I want to deal with exactly what is accurate. That’s in fairness to any individual that you’re dealing with.
Is he contacting you a lot?
Of course. This is where he wants to be. He knows he made a mistake in being in the wrong place. I think he’s remorseful for that. I’ve got to deal with what is best for the team first. Then at the same time try to do what’s right for young men.
What’s his demeanor?
Very humble. Very remorseful. He also wants me to know the truth, the way he perceives it, and I’ve heard that. I’ve seen seen some things just as you have. I’m just gathering all the facts from his side, the other sides and just waiting to see what the court date holds and what comes from that. Then we’ll make a decision.
Evan talked about Chad’s signing lighting a fire under (backup quarterbacks) Ryan and DeVante. Have you seen that?
It has. I don’t know if it’s just the fact that they’ve gotten more reps or if it’s just the signing. I don’t know. We held Bo out all the practices before we broke for the holidays. They’re just getting all the reps now. They’re getting more practice with the ones. That may have as much to do with it as signing another quarterback. Maybe it’s a combination. I don’t know.
Bo’s ankle OK?
We didn’t really do anything with him so it was hard to tell. I saw him last night, and he said he felt good.