2012 SEC Sneak Peek: Mississippi RebelsPublished 3:17pm Thursday, June 28, 2012
Remember when you were a kid and you were punished for doing something wrong? Well, I did nothing wrong, but I still must find a way to write a good column about a bad football program. Now that is being punished!
There are two things I can’t find in any library, books identifying Egyptian war heroes and the other regarding the recent successes surrounding Ole Miss Football.
New head Coach Hugh Freeze will have his chance to do what no one has accomplished in the past 15 SEC contests at Mississippi, win a conference game. It is one thing being a supporting character in Michael Oher’s “The Blind Side” and for winning the Sun Belt Conference at Arkansas State, but at the end of the day, it is still Mississippi.
Freeze is known for being able to create quick turnarounds everywhere he has been, but those turnarounds took place in high school, the NAIA and the Sun Belt Conference.
There is enough talent to possibly double their win total from 2011. That would mean an end to the SEC drought. I guess going from two wins to four would be a major accomplishment considering what Houston Nutt left in the cupboard.
Remember, when Nutt arrived, the Rebels played in back-to-back Cotton Bowls, but with Ed Orgeron’s recruits.
Freeze must motivate and inspire young men into believing they can overcome significant obstacles.
And the obstacles are; Alabama, Arkansas, LSU, Auburn, Georgia, Texas A&M and Vanderbilt. Yes, even the brain surgeons will be better than the Rebels.
I predict the losing streak will reach 14 until they host the last game of their season against Mississippi State. The Bulldogs will help the Rebels extend their streak of losses in the SEC to a whopping 23.
Their out of conference games are with Central Arkansas, UTEP, Texas and Tulane. I see three wins here.
The good news is this; the Rebels return 12 starters from 2011.
Now for the bad news, you won’t recognize any of the names.
Junior running back Jeff Scott could potentially be an upper-level SEC ball-carrier, but unfortunately, the Rebels return only one starter on the offensive line.
Defensive coordinator Dave Wommack says he has “five or six guys I feel can really help us win in the SEC.”
If Dave feels he can win in the SEC with five or six guys, who am I to tell him any different?
There are three quarterbacks who participated in spring drills. None of which won the starting job. Enough said there.
The Mississippi football program is in a transition with depth a major concern. Compound that with limited talent and some major academic issues, the Rebels are definitely not going anywhere for a while.
Ole Miss finished 114th in total offense and 90th in total defense.
Look for the Rebels to finish last in the SEC West and a 3-9 finish for 2012.
Ole Miss has been participating in college football for 115 years. They have won six Southeastern Conference titles, the last being 1963.
They have won or claim three national championships (1959, 1960, and 1962).
I would bet that they will surpass Auburn’s streak of 50 years without a title
Next week: Auburn
Until next time.
The Outlook will feature preview columns of each SEC team leading up to the full Sportz Blitz/Outlook 2012 SEC preview in July.
Meyers is a college football columnist.