SEC to hire ex-coach David Cutcliffe to assist commissioner in football relations role

Former coach David Cutcliffe is coming back to the SEC, but this time in an entirely different capacity, as he'll be working for the conference as special assistant to the commissioner for football relations, it was announced Thursday.

"David Cutcliffe has earned tremendous respect across the college football community and he adds to the SEC office a valuable depth of knowledge and expertise in the game," SEC commissioner Greg Sankey said in a statement.

Cutcliffe, 67, was most recently the head coach at Duke, where he twice was named ACC Coach of the Year over his 14 seasons. He won 77 games and made six bowl appearances before agreeing to part ways with the university in November.

His new role will have him "provide guidance to the SEC Commissioner's office for the purpose of enhancing the overall quality of football competition in the SEC in areas including game management, communications, playing rules, national policies and scheduling best practices."

Cutcliffe will work with SEC head coaches and will "communicate regularly ... on key issues."

The Alabama alumnus got his coaching start in the SEC as an assistant at Tennessee from 1983 to 1998 and then as head coach at Ole Miss from 1998 to 2004.

Cutcliffe was named SEC Coach of the Year in 2003 after leading Ole Miss to the SEC West title.

He returned to Tennessee as an assistant from 2006-07 before getting the head coaching job at Duke.

"I am thrilled to return to the Southeastern Conference where I have spent much of my life," Cutcliffe said in a statement. "It is rewarding to be joining an amazing team at the SEC Office led by Commissioner Sankey and his staff. I look forward to working with the coaches and administrators across the league to continue to further advance football in the SEC."