Ole Miss Looks For Returning Players, Third Ranked Class To Meld In 2012
Carl Lafferty begins his eighth season as a full-time assistant coach with the Rebels in 2015.
In his first year back working on the field as a volunteer assistant in 2007, Lafferty worked with the outfielders and catchers, and assisted with the hitters. Lafferty also served as the first base coach. In his time working with the outfielders, Lafferty helped develop Jordan Henry, the 2007 SEC Freshman of the Year selection and a Freshman All-America selection. He also worked with his brother, Justin, a ninth round draft pick of the Detroit Tigers in the 2007 Major League Baseball Draft.
Upon moving to a full-time position in 2008, Lafferty continued to work with the catchers, but also assumed duties assisting head coach Mike Bianco with the pitching staff before assuming duties as recruiting coordinator prior to the 2010 season.
In his first season as a full-time assistant, Lafferty tutored several players who went on to be drafted in the 2008 MLB Draft, including three pitchers taken in the first 75 picks - Lance Lynn (39), Cody Satterwhite (67) and Scott Bittle (75). Bittle earned First Team All-America honors. Lafferty also worked with catcher, Brett Basham, who earned SEC All-Defensive team honors and was drafted by the Chicago White Sox in the 16th round. Basham led the SEC in runners caught stealing and led all catchers in runners picked off.
Lynn went on to help the St. Louis Cardinals claim the 2011 World Series in his rookie season in the Major Leagues.
The trend continued in 2009 as the Rebels saw 11 players drafted, eight of whom worked under the direction of Lafferty. Six pitchers and two catchers were drafted in the 2009 season, including pitchers Scott Bittle (4th round - St. Louis), Nathan Baker (5th round - Pittsburgh), Brett Bukvich (18th round - Florida), Phillip Irwin (21st round - Pittsburgh), Aaron Barrett (27th round - Texas), Chris Corrigan (30th round - St. Louis), and catchers Brett Basham (50th round - San Diego) and Kyle Henson (39th round - San Francisco). The former catcher was also responsible for helping the Rebels claim the 2009 Southeastern Conference Championship.
Lafferty continued to develop top pitching talent for the Rebels in 2010, guiding a pair of arms to All-America status. Junior southpaw Drew Pomeranz was named an All-America selection while freshman right-hander Brett Huber was named a Freshman All-America selection. Both pitchers also garnered All-SEC honors. Pomeranz also went on to be named the SEC Pitcher of the Year, the first in the history of the award for Ole Miss. A finalist for the National Pitcher of the Year and the Golden Spikes Award, Pomeranz was taken by the Cleveland Indians with the fifth overall pick in the 2010 MLB Draft, becoming the highest drafted player in school history. He was one of four pitchers under Lafferty's tutelage to be drafted in 2010.
He added to his list of players to go on and play professional ball in 2011 with the selection of four pitchers and a catcher in the MLB Draft. David Goforth (7th round - Milwaukee), Austin Wright (8th round - Philadelphia), Miles Hamblin (12th round - Houston), Matt Crouse (24th round - Detroit) and Matt Tracy (24th round - New York Yankees) were all drafted and signed to play professionally.
The number of pitchers to go on to the professional ranks after playing under Lafferty grew following the 2012 season when Dylan Chavez (14th round - Boston) and R.J. Hively (19th round - Arizona) were both selected in the MLB Draft.
The assistant coach continued to add to the list of players who moved on to the professional ranks under his tutaledge following the 2013 campaign when four of the five drafted players were pitchers, including third round pick Mike Mayers, fifth round pick Bobby Wahl and both seniors Tanner Bailey and Brett Huber.
Five more pitchers coached by Lafferty were drafted in 2014 with four going on to the professional ranks: Chris Ellis (3rd round - Angels), Josh Laxer (9th round - Detroit), Hawtin Buchanan (20th round - Seattle) and Aaron Greenwood (28th round - Houston). Christian Trent (29th round - Dodgers) was also drafted, but elected to return to the team.
In his time as a Rebel coach, Lafferty has worked to develop 24 pitchers who have gone on to the professional ranks - including four who have gone on to Major League careers.
Lafferty returned to Ole Miss in 2004 to complete his degree after having spent several years playing professional baseball with the St. Louis Cardinals organization. Lafferty earned his Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice with a minor in Sociology from the University of Mississippi in 2004.
He was drafted by the Florida Marlins in the 20th round of the 2001 MLB Draft. After a short stint with the Marlins, Lafferty signed a professional contract with the St. Louis Cardinals. The catcher played two seasons (2002-03) with the Peoria Chiefs, a single-A affiliate of the Cardinals, and also played with the high-A affiliate, the Palm Beach Cardinals.
A native of Pine Bluff, Ark., he played for the Rebels from 1998-2001, finishing his career in the first year under current head coach Mike Bianco. A four-time letterwinner, Lafferty hit .307 for his career with 104 RBI. He also notched 42 extra-base hits, including 16 home runs.
As a senior, Lafferty was named to the All-SEC second team, becoming the schools 92nd All-SEC honoree in program history. Lafferty also served as team captain that season.
Lafferty is married to the former Lauren Nelson of Baldwyn, Miss. The couple has one child, William Carl Lafferty IV.
Ole Miss has been held under 100 yards rushing in each of its last meetings with Alabama, a 33-14 loss in 2012 and a 25-0 loss in 2013. Running the ball effectively and finding a balance is one area, the... read more
Ole Miss Athletics Week in ReviewSept. 22-28, 2014Football- No. 10 Ole Miss used a dominant defensive effort to put away Memphis 24-3 on Saturday, setting up one of the biggest games in recent history this coming Saturday against the Alabama... read more
Tuesday 9/23 at 4PM
@CoachHughFreeze reveals the helmets to the @olemissfb team at team meeting. pic.twitter.com/8jpVCvny4p— OleMissPix (@OleMissPix) September 29, 2014 2.
Wed 9/24 at 4PM
@OleMissFB practice hidden indoors so that team practice in helmets for safety reasons. pic.twitter.com/vA0Oo6Ps7S— OleMissPix (@OleMissPix) September... read more
It's Sunday, so that means it's time for this week's Observations from the Best Seat in the House. I'll handle the bulk of the notes this week, but we also have some insight from Austin Miller here as well. Let's... read more
Seeking its first win over a top-10 team since 2009, Ole Miss took a 1-0 lead but fell short to No. 10 Texas A&M, 2-1, Sunday afternoon. "I'm really happy with the team's performance," head coach Matt Mott said. "I'm... read more
Wearing the lighter blue helmets for the first time since 1994 to honor the late Chucky Mullins, the Ole Miss defense also honored his memory with perhaps the most dominant defensive performance of the Hugh Freeze Era. "Chucky would have... read more
Three areas to watch as No. 10 Ole Miss faces Memphis Saturday. Battle of the Quarterbacks Ole Miss and Memphis have both gotten steady quarterback play, as both teams rank inside the top-15 nationally in scoring offense. Senior quarterback Bo... read more
Playing in their fourth overtime game of the season, the Ole Miss soccer team played Arkansas to a 1-1 double-overtime draw on Thursday night. The teams combined for 30 shots, including 13 on goal, but the game was characterized more... read more
Highlights from Ole Miss head coach Hugh Freeze's time on the SEC teleconference Wednesday, ahead of the Rebels' matchup with Memphis on Saturday (6:30 p.m. CT, Fox Sports Net). Freeze's time on the call begins at the 1:21:20 mark. For... read more
Memphis is 2-1 heading into Saturday's matchup with wins over Austin Peay (63-0) and Middle Tennessee (36-17) and a 42-35 loss at No. 11 UCLA. The Tigers scored two early fourth-quarter touchdowns to tie the Bruins at 35-35 with 13:44... read more
Ole Miss Athletics Week in ReviewSept. 15-21, 2014Volleyball- Ole Miss went 4-0 to capture the Rebel Classic and improve to 14-0 on the season.- Through four weeks of the season, the Rebels have equaled last year's win total (14-17).- Sophomore... read more
This is the fourth installment of Observations from the Best Seat in the House. The idea of this weekly feature will be to bring you all some of our observations from the previous week in Ole Miss Sports. This week... read more