HOOVER, Ala. – The reality is, it took great persistence on the part of a cable network to make Ole Miss football reality television happen.
It took the fourth overture by TruTv – and Ole Miss coach Houston Nutt seeing a demonstration on campus – before he gave the go-ahead.
Broadcast dates and times for the programming are undetermined, and the whole show is still very much in the planning stages.
TruTv, a reality television network, is expected to video the Rebels’ training camp from its beginning on Aug. 9 through the season-opening game at Memphis on Sept. 6.
One reason Nutt agreed to open his program to the cameras is because of what he might gain in exposure to recruits.
Another reason is that he’s the ultimate editor.
“I can cut it off any time I want. I see every piece of footage before it goes to California,” he said.
The Speech on Nutt’s desk
– Florida quarterback Tim Tebow’s speech after the Gators’ loss to Ole Miss last year has been immortalized on a plaque outside the school’s football complex. It has also made its way to Houston Nutt’s desk in his office at Ole Miss.
“Those words he spoke to the media, I have that on my desk. I’ve read that to our team,” Nutt said. “That was awesome. I have an awesome respect for that. What you love about Tim Tebow is not only did he make that promise, he carried it out.”
Nutt and Tebow shared a handshake and wished one another good luck for 2009 when they crossed paths between interviews Thursday.
“I didn’t think that speech would become what it became. I was upset, heartbroken and just felt like I let my teammates and coaches down,” Tebow said. “I wanted fans to know something good was going to come from that, something positive from something that was so negative. They were going to see a different team, a different player.”
Tebow says there’s no “want another shot at Ole Miss” mentality for he or his teammates. The Rebels were the only team to beat the Gators last season.
“Playing them is definitely appealing, because we would be playing for the SEC championship, which is our goal. No, we’re not worried about trying to face Ole Miss and revenge or anything like that.”
Barksdale, Massie OK?
– In roster news, Nutt said safety Tig Barksdale and offensive lineman Bobby Massie are expected to complete academic work at Hargrave next week, and he expects both to qualify.
Junior college transfer Jamar Hornsby will not be allowed to practice with the team prior to his Aug. 12 court date on an assault charge. Hornsby’s attorney did not return a call earlier in the week seeking an update on Hornsby’s case.
Ready to lead
– The game slowed down for free safety Kendrick Lewis over the back half of his junior season, and he became one of the Rebels’ top defensive playmakers.
Now he embraces his role as one of the team’s leaders.
“We had lots of leaders last year, guys like Michael Oher, Peria Jerry, Jamarca Sanford and Jason Cook. I saw what their leadership got us, and I took it upon myself to take notes, help build this team and not let their leadership go to waste.”
Lewis was the Rebels’ leader in tackles (85) and interceptions (four) last year and shared the team lead in pass break-ups with six.
Parrish Alford/ NEMS Daily Journal