Senior Stars All About Team

OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM Mike Granger
OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM
Mike Granger
OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM

Nov. 13, 2013

By Mary Ashton Nall Ole Miss Athletics Media Relations

When one became an All-American, the other clinched back-to-back SEC titles.

When one competed in the USA Outdoor Championships, the other became the high point scorer at the SEC Championships.

As if they didn't already do everything in pairs, when Mike Granger tore his ACL to sideline him for his senior season, Ricky Robertson also missed his outdoor season due to groin and sports hernia injuries.

After redshirting in 2012, the fifth-year senior track & field standouts are back for a final season with the Ole Miss Rebels in 2013 after a year of surgeries and rehabilitation.

"Mike jinxed me to redshirt," Robertson said.

"It's meant to be," said Granger. "We came in together and we'll leave together."

Despite their injuries, these roommates are no strangers to the big stage. In their three years of competing for the Rebels, they are already among the most decorated.

A Hickory, Miss., native, Granger is a four-time All-American, three times in the indoor 60-meter dash and once in the outdoor 100 meters. His career is highlighted by a second-place finish at the 2011 NCAA Indoor Championships and a 2010 USA Junior Championships title in the 100. Granger has had four top-five finishes in the sprints at the SEC Championships. He has also appeared at the 2010 World Junior Championships (gold medal on the U.S. 4x100-meter relay team), 2011 USA Championships and the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials.

Robertson, from Hernando, Miss., holds six Southeastern Conference titles in the men's high jump. He has also received All-America honors seven times, twice as the runner-up in the high jump at NCAAs. In 2012, he won the Cliff Harper Trophy for highest point scorer at the SEC indoor meet with top finishes in the high jump, long jump and triple jump events. Later that year, Robertson broke his own school record with a jump of 7-7.25 that ranks him among the top 10 high jumpers in NCAA history. The mark was the top jump in the world at the time.

Although neither athlete has yet to claim an individual NCAA title, the Mississippi natives agree that their goals for the upcoming season are team-oriented. They were not able to contribute to the men's school-record eighth-place finish at the NCAA Outdoor Championships last year, which left them hungry for even more team accomplishments.

"It's important to compete together and win as a team," Granger said. "I want to win a national championship as a team more than I would ever want to have an individual title."

Second-year head coach Brian O'Neal says the talented duo has sacrificed a lot for the team, and he's glad they are back for another shot at representing Ole Miss.

"They are team-oriented guys," O'Neal said. "They do it for the team and for the love of the Red and Blue, and that's what makes them special."

As fifth-year seniors, Granger and Robertson are the oldest members of the men's track & field team. The Rebels signed a large recruiting class last February, and O'Neal says the senior leadership is crucial for the team this year.

"For the upcoming season, our team needs to continue its momentum from last year and it helps to have senior leadership from Mike and Ricky, along with their experience and commitment to excellence on the track," O'Neal explained.

Granger knows the importance of being a role model and the power he holds as a senior.

"As a sprinter, experience is everything. With me being the oldest sprinter on the team, I know the younger teammates are watching me," Granger said. "I need to go hard at practice every day and let them know how to prepare for the tough conference we are in."

Both Granger and Robertson plan to chase a professional track & field career after college, but they say they will forever be grateful for their experience at Ole Miss.

"Coach O'Neal always tells us to be gentlemen and women first, scholars second, and then athletes," Robertson said. "I can use that throughout my life, even when I'm finished competing."

Ole Miss Gear
    Facebook
    Twitter
    Blog
    • Observations from the Best Seat in the House -- Dec. 21

      Sunday, December 21, 2014 - Athletics

      The student were off for the first week of winter break, but Observations from the Best Seat in the House press on, as the football teams moves closer to the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl and the men's and women's basketball teams... read more

    • Wallace Looks to Make More History

      Thursday, December 18, 2014 - Football

      Senior quarterback Bo Wallace, like his head coach, stepped into a program that had won just two games in 2011 and had lost 14 straight games.  Three years later, Wallace helped lead the ninth-ranked Rebels to their first nine-win regular... read more

    • Rebels Ink Nation's Top JUCO Quarterback

      Wednesday, December 17, 2014 - Football

      Official welcome to Chad Kelly, the No. 1 JUCO QB in the country from national champion East Mississippi CC. #HottyToddy-- Ole Miss Football (@OleMissFB) December 17, 2014 Just Sent My LOI In To The University Of Mississippi!!! Feel's Good To... read more

    • Ole Miss Athletics Week in Review (Dec. 8-14, 2014)

      Monday, December 15, 2014 - Athletics

      Ole Miss Athletics Week in ReviewDec. 8-14, 2014Women's Basketball- The Ole Miss women's basketball team rebounded with a 88-48 win over South Alabama on Sunday. The win was the first after back-to-back losses for the Rebels for the first time... read more

    • Recapping Monday's Media Opportunities

      Monday, December 15, 2014 - Football

      Ole Miss Details Stadium Expansion Plans Ole Miss unveiled the master plan for Vaught-Hemingway Stadium, which includes two phases of renovation and expansion. Scheduled for completion by the start of the 2016 season, the expansion will bring the seating capacity... read more

    • Observations from the Best Seat in the House -- Dec. 14

      Sunday, December 14, 2014 - Athletics

      With final exam week on the Ole Miss campus, there was not much game action, but there's still plenty to talk about, as Ole Miss finalized salary increases for head football coach Hugh Freeze and his staff, and the football... read more

    • VIDEO: Ole Miss Volleyball Season Highlight

      Friday, December 12, 2014 - Volleyball

      read more

    • VIDEO: Ole Miss Football 2014 Season Highlight

      Tuesday, December 9, 2014 - Football

      Ole Miss Football 2014 Season Highlight from Ole Miss Rebels on Vimeo.... read more

    • Ole Miss Athletics Week in Review (Dec. 1-7, 2014)

      Monday, December 8, 2014 - Athletics

      Ole Miss Athletics Week in ReviewDec. 1-7, 2014Football- No. 9 Ole Miss accepted an invitation to play in the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl, where they will face No. 6 TCU on Dec. 31 in Atlanta's Georgia Dime.- Ole Miss is making... read more

    • Testing One, Two, Three

      Monday, December 8, 2014 - Academics

      While the Rebels have enjoyed a solid fall on the fields and courts and look forward to the upcoming Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl and more basketball games, all student-athletes are busy this week proving they are champions in the classroom... read more

    • Observations from the Best Seat in the House -- Dec. 7

      Sunday, December 7, 2014 - Athletics

      In the early part of the week, Athletics Director Ross Bjork and head football coach Hugh Freeze reached an agreement on a new contract. In the late part of the week, the Rebels learned their postseason bowl destination. Here are... read more

    • The Season: Ole Miss Football Episode 13

      Wednesday, December 3, 2014 - Men's Basketball

      The Season: Ole Miss Football - Episode 13 - MSU (2014) from Ole Miss Rebels on Vimeo.... read more

    • Rebels Finding a Rhythm after Trip to Florida

      Tuesday, December 2, 2014 -

      Ole Miss continued its strong bounce-back from a season-opening loss to Charleston Southern, improving to 5-1 on the season and knocking off two previously unbeaten opponents in No. 23 Creighton and Cincinnati to capture the inaugural Emerald Coast Classic. "We... read more

    • Bjork, Freeze Reach Agreement on New Contract

      Tuesday, December 2, 2014 - Football

      Athletics Director Ross Bjork and head football coach Hugh Freeze reached an agreement on a new contract, they both announced on Twitter early Tuesday morning. Terms will be released as they are finalized and are expected in the coming days.... read more

    • Ole Miss Athletics Week in Review (No. 24-30, 2014)

      Monday, December 1, 2014 - Athletics

      Ole Miss Athletics Week in Review Nov. 24-30, 2014Football- No. 18 Ole Miss won the annual "Egg Bowl" rivalry 31-17 over No. 4 Mississippi State in front of another sold-out crowd at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium Saturday afternoon.- The Rebels finish the... read more