Missouri Defensive Coordinator and Inside Linebackers coach DeMontie Cross has been relieved of his coaching duties, effective immediately, Tiger Head Coach Barry Odom announced Sunday.
“I am very appreciative of all that DeMontie has done for Mizzou, and am sorry that this did not work out, however, after careful evaluation, I believe it is important to make this change now,” Odom said.
Cross was let go following the Tigers 31-13 loss to South Carolina on Saturday.
Cross was stripped of calling defensive plays midway through last season after the defense showed signs of struggling with new defensive schemes inserted by Cross. Odom has been calling the defensive plays since. Cross also worked with linebackers last year, but was working with just inside linebackers after Odom hired his brother Brian to work with outside linebackers.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that a source says this has “zero to do with on-field performance.”
Speculation will run crazy until we hear from Coach Odom, who is scheduled to speak later Monday morning on his weekly defensive teleconference.
Here was DeMontie’s last Mizzou related tweet on August 25.
Can’t Wait! https://t.co/CSIqo2sGuO
— DeMontie Cross (@CoachCrossZOU) August 26, 2017
An original member of Odom’s staff, Cross returned to his alma mater with 18 years of coaching experience, including 12 seasons with Power 5 programs and five more in the National Football League.
Cross will be paid based upon the terms of his contract according to school officials. Cross is on the second year of a three-year contract that pays him $600,000 annually.