BIRMINGHAM, Alabama (March 24, 2022) – David Cutcliffe, a 40-year veteran of the football coaching profession, has been named Special Assistant to the Commissioner for Football Relations by the Southeastern Conference. Cutcliffe is a former National Coach of the Year and three-time Conference Coach of the Year.


As Special Assistant to the Commissioner for Football Relations, Cutcliffe will 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.


“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,” said SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey. “David will add a new perspective to Conference football operations that will benefit our universities and their student-athletes as we look to the future.”


Among his responsibilities will be to establish and maintain effective working relationships with the SEC head football coaches and key constituents for the purpose of advancing SEC Football; work with SEC staff to review, develop and implement football competition policies; identify policies for consideration by the SEC and/or NCAA intended to enhance and improve the overall quality of college football; and communicate regularly with SEC head football coaches on key issues.


“I am thrilled to return to the Southeastern Conference where I have spent much of my life,” said Cutcliffe.  “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.”


Cutcliffe recently concluded a four-decade college coaching career, including 20 years as a head coach at Ole Miss and Duke.  He served as an assistant at Tennessee from 1982 through 1998 and again from 2006 to 2007, the final six seasons as assistant head coach, and he developed the likes of Heath Shuler and Peyton Manning as quarterbacks coach for nine seasons.  He won the Broyles Assistant Coach of the Year Award in 1998, the year the Volunteers won a national title.


He served as head coach at Ole Miss from 1999 through 2004, leading the Rebels in 2003 to their first 10-win season in 32 years and tying for the SEC West Division title.  Quarterback Eli Manning finished his legendary career that season by leading the Rebels to victory over Oklahoma State in the Cotton Bowl.  Cutcliffe was named SEC Coach of the Year in 2003.


Cutcliffe became head coach at Duke in 2008 and ended an 18-year school bowl drought by leading the Blue Devils to six post-season bowl appearances.  He inherited a program that had only three winning seasons in the previous 25 years and before his arrival had not beaten an ACC opponent in three years.  In 2013 he led Duke to a 10-win season and the ACC Coastal Division title while earning multiple National Coach of the Year honors.   Duke was led by current New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones from 2016-18.  Cutcliffe was named ACC Coach of the year in 2012 and 2013.


David and his wife Karen have four children and seven grandchildren.