STARKVILLE, Miss. (AP) — Mississippi State has hired longtime Louisville assistant Sam Purcell as head coach to succeed interim coach Doug Novak. Purcell has served the past nine seasons with the No. 5 Cardinals, including the past five as associate head coach to Jeff Walz. Considered one of the nation’s best recruiters, talent developers and game scouts, he has helped Louisville go 262-47 during his time there and 147-19 the past five years alone. Novak was hired as associate coach in September before becoming interim coach the following month after Nikki McCray-Penson stepped down for health reasons after one season. The Bulldogs finished 15-14.
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