Ole Miss, Boise State fans eagerly greet new season

Ole Miss fans of all ages enjoyed pregame activities at the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game fan zone located adjacent to the Georgia Dome.

Ole Miss fans of all ages enjoyed pregame activities at the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game fan zone located adjacent to the Georgia Dome. (Petre Thomas)

By John Davis

Oxford Citizen

ATLANTA – Work brought Shane Barker to the South Wednesday afternoon. His Boise State Broncos are keeping him around until Friday. The Weiser, Idaho, native was getting geared up for Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game by having some fun at the fan zone located next to the Georgia Dome.

“The timing just worked out for me to come and I could set up some work-related meetings,” said Barker, who was one of about 4,000 BSU fans on hand for the contest. “It feels a lot like 2006 when we switched coaches. It’s just one of those years you don’t know what you’re going to get until you get on the field.”

That wasn’t the feel of the Ole Miss fans who had gathered nearby for the joint pep rally. Expectations are high for the Rebels, with some fans thinking 10, or more, wins would become a reality.

Todd Morris of Collierville, Tenn., said he has been following Ole Miss since Eli Manning was the quarterback.

“In my house, there are two seasons, football and waiting on football,” Morris said. “I’m very excited. I think Coach (Hugh) Freeze has us on the right track. Our defense is going to step up this year, and this is a perfect stage. We’re going to start in Atlanta and the first week in December, we’re going to finish the SEC season here.”

Tyler Bonner of Atlanta said he felt the 2014 team was going to have the most success of any the past decade.

“I expect 10 in the regular season and then a win in the bowl,” Bonner said. “Boise State is a very good program and this is a good matchup, but I think it ends up being a two-touchdown game. I think Ole Miss is just too fast.”

john.davis@journalinc.com