Earlier this Sunday, Coach Mike Leach was hospitalized for a personal health issue. He was taken to the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson. A team spokesperson has provided few details on his condition.
Mississippi State will continue with recruiting operations and preparations for the ReliaQuest Bowl against Illinois on January 2. In the meantime, defensive coordinator Zach Arnett will be the interim head coach at Mississippi State. He will also be helping with the team’s preparations for the bowl game. A statement from MSU said the university would extend “thoughts and prayers” to the coaching staff and family.”
During Leach’s tenure at MSU, the Bulldogs have been to three straight bowl games. They beat rival Ole Miss in the Egg Bowl on Thanksgiving night and finished the regular season with an 8-4 record. They are currently ranked 22nd and will play in the ReliaQuest Bowl against Illinois on Jan. 2 in Tampa.
According to MSU’s athletic department, Coach Leach will undergo a “number of tests” in order to determine his exact health status. The university will provide updates as they become available. During his time as the head coach at Mississippi State, Leach has a 19-17 record. He spent 10 seasons at Texas Tech and eight at Washington State. He has a career 158-107 record as a head coach. He is also a two-time Big 12 Coach of the Year. In 2010, Leach coached the Bulldogs to an 11-4 record and a victory over Oklahoma in the Cotton Bowl.