Offensive line coach Matt Luke is typically a high-energy guy at practice. Often that means yelling himself hoarse. Today his voice was OK for interviews.
In this bowl practice setting of getting a look at younger players, the competition is often spirited. When Maikhail Miller broke through for a gain against the front seven on the final play of practice, Luke ran through the defense giving them a land shark sign.
You can see Luke running his guys through some drills here, though I didn’t catch the land shark:
Along the offensive line, left guard Aaron Morris was held out of most drills. He did line up for a play at left tackle with the second group, and he joined the first group after right tackle Pierce Burton left practice after twisting an ankle. Luke says Burton is fine.
Staying with the left tackle theme, Burton also lined up there some today. Could be an area to watch in the off-season, finding a second guy behind starter Emmanuel McCray, who has been solid this year.
Luke told us he’s hoping to play around eight guys next year, which would be up from six. His linemen were iron men this season, the only reserve to see significant time being Patrick Junen.
Junen, the former walk-on, saw his snaps increase at the end of the season, and that made him more energetic in practice today Luke said.
Elsewhere, a little running backs video here with Jeff Scott clowning around a little bit:
Quarterback Bo Wallace was held out of most throwing drills, leaving a lot of reps for Barry Brunetti and Maikhail Miller. Ole Miss coach Hugh Freeze singled out the play of Miller, the former IAHS star.
Freeze said Wallace could have gone today if necessary. “We have seven full practices after we get back from Christmas. We’re going to try and hold him for those seven. We’re just trying to make sure he has as much pop in his shoulder as he can for the bowl game.”
The game is Jan. 5.
Freeze has had to make do with less pop from Wallace at times this season. Wallace wasn’t on the field for the Rebels’ final possession at LSU, because Freeze didn’t think he could throw it far enough downfield at that point in the game.
Off-season surgery for Wallace is a possibility. A decision won’t be made until after the bowl game.
Freeze told us that tight end Jamal Mosley is the only potential academic casualty for the bowl game. His case is still pending.
Among the young players getting extra work today, Freeze singled out the play of Carlos Thompson at defensive end. He also said Thompson could possibly move to tight end depending on how many defensive ends are signed.
Freshman wide receiver Cody Core is another possible position change. He could go to safety.