This is a random order. Here’s Reason No. 25 that Ole Miss will be improved in 2011.
What a difference a signing class makes. The Rebels added six players to a thin position with five freshmen and junior college transfer Philander Moore, who arrived in time to go through spring drills.
There are numerous high profile high school recruits in the class. It’s disappointing there have already been rumblings of discontent over role and playing time, but that appears to have smoothed over.
There is speed and talent in the group, and freshmen are going to play big roles. At least one, Donte Moncrief, has a better than average chance to start, especially with the health of 6-foot-6 junior Melvin Harris becoming a bit more of a concern each day. If Harris is out, Moncrief will stat. If Harris is in, Moncrief might start anyway.
Clearly the coaches like what they see in Moncrief. He had a 53-yard touchdown catch and a 35-yard touchdown run in last Saturday’s scrimmage.
That’s another thing. Look for these receivers to be involved in the run game. Grant also scored on the ground in the scrimmage, running in from 24 yards out.
These receivers, though, were not signed to run the football.
Nick Brassell can stretch the field and catch in traffic. Tobias Singleton is getting in shape.
Ole Miss coach Houston Nutt has had good things to say about Collins Moore, but ultimately there aren’t enough balls to go around. Someone will likely redshirt.
Harris and sophomore Ja-Mes Logan will play, and so will redshirt freshman Vincent Sanders.
It will be interesting to see where upperclassmen like Terrell Grant and Derrick Herman fit in. Herman has been running at first team at slot receiver. Grant had a big spring and showed he can be a physical receiver.
Harris and Logan combined for 59 catches and five touchdowns last year. While the buzz has been about the new guys, experience is important, especially when there’s inexperience at so many positions.
Experience hasn’t been enough to allow the veterans to coast through camp, Logan said. They’ve been pushed to keep their spots.
All in all I think it’s going to be a strong group, and the Rebels need receivers to make great catches – not just the easy ones – while inexperienced quarterbacks find their way.