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I watched the Ole Miss-UTEP game almost in its entirety earlier this week.
Here are some immediate thoughts, starting with the offense first.
- Quarterback Bo Wallace has a big-time arm when you let him wind up.
- Wallace has reasonable athleticism. What is "reasonable?" He has athleticism somewhere between that of David Ash and Garrett Gilbert.
- Wallace is fairly accurate but he's not a pinpoint passer.
- He's a sturdy player. He can take a square hit.
- Ole Miss has a good running back, but the Rebels' run game overall is relatively weak (which is one of the reasons why Houston Nutt got fired a year ago). New head coach Hugh Freeze uses a lot of misdirection to get things going.
- The Ole Miss offensive line is in a state of change. Most of them were recruited by Nutt who favored a power running. Now it's more of a spread offense, a style the OLs weren't recruited for. Unless Ole Miss can have success with its quick passing game, Texas should be able to get to Wallace in the pocket.
- Randall Mackey is a utility player for Ole Miss. A former high school quarterback, he will play running back and take wildcat snaps that he can throw off of.
- The back-up quarterback is Barry Brunetti, a transfer from West Virginia, who has more speed and athleticism than Wallace.
- Donte Moncrief is the big-play receiver. Moncrief is a future pro who has very good deep speed and good hands.
- Ole Miss does not use the tight end much. They favor the wide receiver quick game and they have a couple of smaller guys who can be tough to tackle in space and have good hands.
- Ole Miss sacrifices size for speed at multiple positions.
- They have a 260-pound defensive tackle and 250-pound defensive end.
- That being said, the unit is very quick overall. They will make several plays in the Texas backfield but they can be pounded over time.
- The secondary is fairly talented but not overwhelmingly so. The one position where they alter their size/speed trade-off is at safety. Cody Prewitt is a 6-3, 210-pound safety and he is not as fast as his defensive back counterparts but is more physical.
- The strength of the defense are the corners, the speed of the linebackers and the speed of the defensive front, particularly the DT and DE mentioned above. No. 33 E.J. Epperson, the defensive end, was the most active player for the Rebels defense against UTEP.
- The defense is a 4-3 with a lot of hybrid looks. Even with the hybrid looks, they played UTEP fairly straight-forward
- The punt returner is small but slippery. He will be hard to tackle in the open field.
- Ole Miss had issues against UTEP getting their punts off quickly. Texas could elect to go after the punter several times but I expect Ole Miss to alter its protection accordingly.
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Ole Miss was a terrible run D last year.
UTEP ran for 207 yards on 5.8 ypc against OU
UTEP ran for 37 yards on 1.2 ypc against Ole Miss
Ole Miss that improved as a rush D, OU just really bad against the run, UTEP caught OU off guard and Ole Miss had the benefit of having UTEP on tape, or you don't take anything away from those numbers?
Sounds like this game will be stiffer competition than most people thought coming into the season. Sure hope Texas comes out firing on all cylinders both on offense and defense! Thanks for your insight. Hookem!!
I think we have a statue of him on campus.
UTEP was also without their top back, the same back who ran all over OU.
I'm so glad we chose McCoy over Wallace........SMH
Keep in mind that OU is basically learning a new defensive system as well, and that night in El Paso was their first time facing live bullets. It took half a season for our defense to get up to speed under Manny last year.
It's interesting that this will be a face off of two offenses in transition.
Their defense is light in the backside. I think that will matter before the day is done. I think it will also matter how quickly our LB's start rounding into the form we became accustomed to with Keenan and Acho.
Also, we're going to put Wallace on his backside. A lot.
I got brains. I got big ol' brains. I got dinosaur brains.
more or less of a problem for Espinosa? I assume the big strong guys give him fits, but not sure what a smaller quicker guy presents.
This guy is extremely quick so we'll see.
Wrong years. Wallace cane out of juco same year as Brewer and Overstreet.
Coming out with more of a purpose this week is important. I liken this game to the away game at North Carolina a decade or so ago.
I think it was more that we took Ash over Wallace. you don't bring in a juco qb to be the clipboard holder
XoGisele, Ashley Sky, Niki Skyler
There was a video showing that over the summer, IIRC.
One of my questions this week for the Ole Miss writer is about their DTs and what kind of advantage/disadvantage they'll have there considering their size and Espinosa's struggles.
I think Mackey is a wildcard on Saturday. Not only was he a HS quarterback, but he was Ole Miss' starter for ~6 games last year. Freeze won't be too shy when it comes to letting him take a shot or three.
I have a BAD feeling on this game. Hope I am wrong, but the Horns have showed my very little so far this year - hopefully on purpose...
- God Bless Texas
Interesting analogy. I think that game followed the 8 sack performance by North Texas, so there were definite questions. And they put a beat down on UNC. That was a really talented UT team that, while top 10 almost all year, seemed to have a lot of trouble consistenly playing to its potential (a common theme historically for Texas teams). I think today's coaching staff may have gotten a national title out of that group.
Btw, great write-up Bobby. Getting your perspective on the opponent like this is awesome. Really separating hookem.com from the others.
Don't feel comfortable then.
No Ivan Williams on this roster.
I have concerns too. We really need to get off to a fast start to get the momentum early. If we don't start fast i think this game might be a nail biter.
Good stuff Bobby.
I agree with the poster who said it's not going to be as easy as originally thought.... or at least it doesn't appear that way right now.
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I agree... if we come out like we're playing Wyoming or New Mexico again. But I have a feeling we're going to come out with a purpose, especially defensively. I think it's the first game with any excitment for the guys, and they'll respond accordingly and to prove something about Texas and the SEC. I will be surprised if Ole Miss scores more than 10 in this game. I think we'll score on special teams at least once, too.
I think he meant by not telling Case to pack his stuff and go when Case was looking to transfer after holiday bowl.
Either way, Wallace wouldn't be content to sit the bench and Case is now that he got put in place. Probably worked out better, don't thik Wallace is better than Ash especially over the next two years projection.
agree with bbliss.....the team has been hidden away by LHN, we're playing a "SEC" team....I think the D stands up for this one...im just anxious to see if we attack their smallish D with the power run all game or if we get our speedsters the ball in actual space- see Daje's touchdown.. that to me is space...or maybe even make one guy miss...but space, not a bubble pass with three guys to shake...
Change Or Die~~
The 260 lb DT y'all are talking about is true freshman Issac Gross. He was an under armor all American. He would been redshirted if we were deeper! He has unbelievable first step quickness and doesn't give up on plays. Can't wait til next year when he comes back at 285
Our bench is littered with under armor and army all Americans, we'll see what he has on game day. I have no doubt he might get some occassional pass rush, but I doubt he holds up against the run especially when the backs hitting up the middle are almost his weight.
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