By Parrish Alford
OXFORD – Ole Miss coach Hugh Freeze apologized for losing his composure but not for defending his program in the minutes following the Rebels’ 41-38 loss to then-No. 9 Texas A&M.
A video posted at the website of Memphis TV station WATN shows Freeze responding in the direction of the south end zone stands after being addressed by someone from there.
At his Monday press conference Freeze said he felt the incident was blown out of proportion but that he wished he’d have handled it differently.
“That deal, I don’t think there was as much to it as some media would like to make. They’re looking for a story,” he said. “I will defend our program. I will defend our kids. I will defend my family. I wish I had been more composed. I apologize that I wasn’t at that time. I will try not to allow that to happen again.”
Freeze said the family atmosphere at Ole Miss is the program’s top selling point in recruiting and that many recruits are responding to that.
“When you have a game of 80-something plays, they may agree with our calls for 75 of them. They may disagree with five. That’s OK. I don’t mind that. I get that. Sometimes I agree with them that it was not the right thing, but if we really all want to get to where we want to go, the way to go about it is not a public demeaning of a player or a program or our staff. Hey, email me. I’ll try my best to respond to it. If we all want to get to that place, that does not help us move forward. We are moving forward, and our kids know that.”
The complete text of Freeze’s comments on the matter can be seen on the Ole Miss blog at InsideOleMissSports.com.
Getting Kincade ready
A lingering shoulder injury for quarterback Barry Brunetti could open the door for the debut of freshman Devante Kincade.
Freeze said in August he hoped to redshirt both freshman quarterbacks, Kincade and Ryan Buchanan, but that he needed to get one of them ready to play.
That was Kincade, the more mobile of the two, who turned heads in August camp with his accuracy and arm strength as well as his running.
Freeze said he would get Kincade ready to play but would play him only if Brunetti was unable to go.
A native of Dallas, Kincade was rated a four-star prospect by Scout.com and also by ESPN, which had him as the 12th-best dual-threat quarterback.
Seeking top 10 win
The Rebels’ loss to Texas A&M stretched their streak of top 10 losses to 11 games. Ole Miss last defeated a team ranked in the top 10 when it beat No. 8 LSU 27-25 in 2009.
LSU is No. 6 in the AP Top 25 this week.