Andy Kennedy has a new job, and it’s not a return to coaching. Kennedy coached the Ole Miss basketball team from 2006 through last February, then resigned after announcing that he and the school had agreed to part ways. He then served as a studio analyst for evening editions of SEC Network’s SEC Now during the SEC basketball tournament, and that performance has now led to SEC Network hiring him as a regular analyst this year; he’ll appear across ESPN platforms as well.
Here’s more from ESPN’s release:
SEC Network has signed an agreement with former Ole Miss head coach Andy Kennedy to appear as an analyst for college basketball coverage across SEC Network and ESPN for the 2018-19 season. Kennedy will make his official debut Wednesday on SEC Network’s coverage from 2018 SEC Basketball Media Days, live from Birmingham beginning at 11 a.m. ET.
“Having been a part of college basketball for over 28 years as both a player and a coach, including the last 12 seasons as a head coach in the SEC, I’m very excited to join the team at the SEC Network,” Kennedy said. “Coming off an unprecedented season with eight SEC teams earning NCAA Tournament bids, this league has never been better.”
Kennedy served as a studio analyst for the evening editions of SEC Now at the SEC Men’s Basketball Tournament last March, providing unique insight and analysis on the action having faced every team in the tourney. Despite quipping during one of his final press conferences at Ole Miss that he “has a face for radio,” Kennedy was a fan favorite during SEC Network’s coverage from the Gateway City, showcasing a close rapport with coaches, players and analysts alike.
It’s interesting, albeit not uncommon, to see one of those postseason gigs turn into a longer one, and analyst work seemed to suit Kennedy well last spring. He has a long coaching history, going 246-156 at Ole Miss and 21-13 in one season as head coach at Cincinnati before that, and also working as an assistant at South Alabama, UAB, and Cincinnati from 1994-2005. Analysis is a newer role for him, but he seemed to handle it well last year, and he adds to a large lineup of ESPN and SEC Network college basketball personalities, which is a good thing for a company that plans to show over 2,800 men’s college basketball games this year (over 850 on linear TV and 2,000 more across streaming platforms). We’ll see how he fits in there.