Time will tell how Denzel Nkemdiche and Serderius Bryant, who shared starts at outside linebacker last season, will respond to their off-season arrests.
We’re looking at a small sample size of their actions since then. We have one very visual example of Nkemdiche’s actions where he was provoked but responded poorly by taking the bait.
Maybe Denzel Nkemdiche has has grown from his arrest. I am not around him and can’t say so I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt. The spring break video, however, is not evidence of growth.
Bryant, on the other hand, says he is working hard to make the right decisions when he finds himself in uncomfortable discussions in public.
From the beginning, Ole Miss coach Hugh Freeze identified a difference in the transgressions of the two. Bryant has been allowed to participate in spring drills. Denzel Nkemdiche has not.
Freeze told us at his spring presser that Bryant would practice this spring, Nkemdiche would not. Both have “lists” they have to complete. Nkemdiche’s is longer. Nkemdiche will miss the first game. Depending on what transpires from here, it’s possible he could miss more than the first game.
Freeze told us then that Bryant could regain good standing with the team before the first game. He didn’t rule out the possibility of Bryant being suspended for that opener against Boise State in Atlanta.
Bryant was made available to us after practice on Monday and talked a little about his suspension and how he has attacked trying to regain good standing with the team.
He said: “That was all on me. I take full responsibility for everything I did, getting arrested I take full responsibility for it. I don’t blame it on nobody else but myself. I’ve got take the consequences. “Whatever comes behind it I’ve got to take, just take it and learn from it.
“Just know that people are going to push your buttons. A lot of people are going to push your buttons, and you’ve just got to know that sticks and stones may broke your bones, but words will never hurt. I just let the words hurt me. I retaliated, and it was a bad decision. It was a decision I won’t make again.”