Rebels Hold First Scrimmage Of Spring Drills

OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM Barry Brunetti (Courtesy Josh McCoy)
Barry Brunetti (Courtesy Josh McCoy)

March 30, 2012

OXFORD, Miss. – After defense controlled play to start the afternoon, the Ole Miss offense picked up late in the Rebels’ first scrimmage of spring football drills Friday in Vaught-Hemingway Stadium.

“I thought the defense dominated the first half, maybe more, of the scrimmage,” said first-year head coach Hugh Freeze. “Then we went into some of our tempo stuff and it gave them problems. I thought there were some really nice plays by some of our offensive guys at the end. The kicking game was really good.”

Highlighting the late offensive surge was a pair of touchdown throws from quarterback Barry Brunetti to receiver Ja-Mes Logan from 15 and 30 yards away.

“Brunetti threw two back-shoulder throws that were as good as I have seen in a long time,” Freeze said. “That was a really nice fade to Ja-Mes on the first one, and I thought Ja-Mes stood out.”

Tailback Jeff Scott rushed for two TDs, on runs of 10 and three yards, as did QB Randall Mackey, who ran into the endzone from 46 and six yards out.

“We went live with the quarterbacks out of the pocket, and there were some decent things done by Mackey, Brunetti and Bo Wallace,” said Freeze.

With the offensive line struggling with “mental mistakes,” Freeze said it has been hard to grade the quarterback race after a week of practice.

“It’s hard to evaluate (the QBs) right now six practices in,” he said. “In the next three weeks, we have to get to where we can evaluate them. Our offensive line is going to get better. Coach (Matt) Luke is doing a good job with them.”

On the other side, Freeze is pleased with how the defensive unit is progressing.

“They’re doing some good stuff out there,” he said. “(The coaches) are rallying them. They’re understanding and taking coaching. I just think they got gassed today, and the tempo stuff got them at the end.”

The Rebels take the rest of the weekend off before resuming spring drills Monday morning at 5:30 a.m. CT. All three practices next week (Monday, Tuesday at 3:15 p.m. and Thursday at 5:30 a.m.) are open to the public.

Use of cellular phones and cameras are prohibited for fans at practice, and fans must remain in the designated area. Fans are not allowed between the practice fields.

For an updated schedule of practice times and locations, please refer to the 2012 Spring Practice Schedule button located in the left side of the football home page. All information is tentative and subject to change.

Spring drills will culminate with the annual BancorpSouth Grove Bowl, Saturday, April 21 at 1 p.m. at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium. CSS will televise the intra-squad scrimmage live.

Other events of Grove Bowl Week are the Rebels’ Choice Awards on Monday, April 16; the Chucky Mullins Award Banquet on Thursday, April 19; a free concert in The Grove with Gavin DeGraw and special guest Craig Morgan on Friday, April 20 and a weekend baseball series against Arkansas.

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