National Team Training Camp an Eye-Opening Experience for Kizer

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Thumbnail image for IMG_0632_CROP.jpgOXFORD, Miss. - CeCe Kizer established herself as one of the SEC's premier attacking players in 2017, and last month she showcased her skills at an even higher level at a training camp with the United States Under-23 National Team.

The week-long training session featured the top soccer players in the country. It was Kizer's second invite to the camp in as many months, putting her squarely in the thick of the pool of players the national team keeps on its radar.

"The training was definitely intense," Kizer said. "It was a hard environment to go into because everyone is trying to show their stuff, but overall it was a good experience. I learned a lot. I love learning more about the game. I still think I have a lot of areas I can develop in but it is exciting to know I may have a future with the national team program."

The speed of the game is night-and-day from the SEC level. Kizer knew this, but it didn't deter her and she certainly was up for the challenge.

"The speed of play is quicker," Kizer said. "Your mind and everything have to be on all the time. Everything is going 100 miles per hour. It was kind of hard to get adjusted to, but I had been to a camp before that so I had some experience under my belt."

Kizer first found out she'd be involved with the UWSNT U-23 program back in the fall. It was a dream come true for the Ole Miss star. 

"It's always been my dream so there were so many emotions," Kizer said. "I was excited and terrified and nervous, but I let it soak in and realized I deserve this and it's something I'd been working for for a long time."

Ole Miss head coach Matt Mott was proud but certainly not surprised.

"She's really well-respected throughout the entire league," Mott said. "The idea that she is in the national team pool shows you she is one of the best players in the country without question."

Mott is also well-aware of the difference in speed and skill level from the SEC to the national team level.

"It's the quality," Mott said. "You are taking all of the best college players, and even some pros, and putting them together. U-23 is just one step from the senior national team. That's when you really weed out and start getting the top players."

Perhaps the most invaluable thing the experience gave Kizer was confidence. Knowing she belongs with the best players in the country and being able to keep up and excel.

"Just knowing my hard work is continuing to pay off and learning more things I need to develop and get better at," Kizer said. "It helps making my training harder. It is huge for confidence because if you don't have that you are not going to play at your full potential."

Entering the 2018 campaign as a senior, Kizer wants to be a leader in her final year in Oxford. Playing at a higher level has taught her how important communication is. She'd like to carry that over to next season.

"Being that leader for the team," Kizer said. "I am a senior now and I need to communicate a lot more and make the players around me better."

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    Tiffany J. Moore said:

    This is amazing with what he have done so far! Hope that he'll achieve more in the future!

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    Fiftyyears fan said:

    How can you have five straight top 25 recruiting classes and look as bad as Ole Miss has this year. Easy lack of coaching fundamentals. Look at Mason at Vandy, nothing but 2 and 3 star recruits out of high school and he developers players that want to win. Hugh freeze has 3, 4 & 5 recruits and he expects them to win because of what they were in High School. Mr. Freeze you have not been teaching the fundamentals of football or winning in life. Mr. Freeze you have quit on your players because you have some false expectations of what they are instead of what you can develop in them. Either do your job or quit. Oh yea, please quit running your smoke and mirrors offense, everyone has figured it out. Run a physical offense that can open up holes for your running backs and then your pass attack want require 12 are 14 four and five star receivers. Mr. Freeze you have problems and you need to know that you are not smarter than the rest of the coaches in the SEC.

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    Karen Holden said:

    Not every pass can be caught. Too low, too short whatever. Not every Kelly pass is perfect. Records were broken by receivers also. But they sre not going to catch every ball thrown. The loss to Auburn was not one players fault. You win or lose as a team.

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    Trent browning said:

    Hey I was just wandering if these are the only 2 olemiss players signing. If there are more signing please respond to me ASAP. Also wondering if neil everett will sign any autographs. Thank you very much

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