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From the aftermath of an 80-75 loss to Mississippi State

As an Ole Miss fan however, it sounds like every time in every sport we are “given” a decent ranking in ANYTHING, the critics come out of the woodworks and claim how overrated we are. Is it our fault that other teams lose and we gradually move up the rankings? Is that not the same process that occurred in football. Yes, at the end of the season, the football team didn’t show to be the #4 team in the country, granted, but neither did USC or hell, Florida for that matter. It just seems the haters are quick to pull the “I knew you weren’t the number whatever team in the nation” right after a loss

- Matt

Overrated at No. 14? Perhaps a bit. But when you get into those middle teens there is a large pool of teams to choose from. What does it take to be No. 14? Ole Miss had played a good schedule. Neutral site games against good teams, two top 10 teams, though it had not played a late one-possession game with either.

This team has some issues in the frontcourt. They may be getting better in areas, we’ll see. Perhaps Terrence Henry and Reginald Buckner will keep coming. They need to. This team has to start fouling less, and there’s nobody to throw to on the low block. Not that that would have made a huge difference against Varnado but it would have made some. Better chance to get a foul called against him if you’re body to body. A low-post passer also increases the odds of an open shot.

The rankings thing isn’t new. You win some games, show you have some talent, and Ole Miss has plenty of it, and you get ranked. Are you supposed to remain in neutral or fall out because your next games are against Centenary and Jacksonville State? That’s not the way it works.

You can find flaws in all those teams in the middle teens.

Maybe the chant shouldn’t be overrated to Ole Miss, which lessens an achievement for MSU, but underrated for MSU, which would have been in the polls had it not lost to three mid-majors.

For what it’s worth, and it’s not much, the polls will shake themselves out, beginning in a few hours for this week’s edition.

Bottom line: Ole Miss hasn’t been to the NCAA tournament since 2002 and has the talent to get there. It must, in my opinion, win at least nine in the SEC if it hopes to have achieved that before going into the SEC tournament. That means the Rebels must go 9-6 in their remaining 15 games.