A Lesson in Group Dynamics

OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM 2004 Ole Miss Soccer Senior Class
OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM
2004 Ole Miss Soccer Senior Class
OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM

Sept. 21, 2004

- By Jeff Mitchell
Athletics Media Relations Student Assistant

For centuries, sages and scholars have been fascinated with the study of groups in an attempt to understand how these organizations form, change, dissipate, commit grave wrongs, and more often achieve great success. The study of group dynamics becomes more intriguing when presented with the idea that no two groups are the same even when striving to reach a common goal.

In the wide world of sports, researchers with an affinity for examining team biorhythms most frequently seek to determine the certain characteristics that help comprise the true championship club. The answer most commonly discovered lies within the core of a particular team's nucleus. So with a curious eye cast upon the 2004 Ole Miss soccer team, an intuitive response to the simple question of what makes the Rebels tick is simple; look no further than the senior class.

The traits are obvious: leadership, intensity, dedication, diligence, consistency, and winning. During the past three campaigns, this season's senior class helped Ole Miss reach its first NCAA Tournament, earn the school's first NCAA Tournament win, and post its highest single-season winning percentage in 2002. Moreover, this habitually successful and remarkably talented group helped Ole Miss chart a season record for victories in 2003, register its most wins ever over a three-year span, and claim its first-ever top-25 ranking.

Consisting of six players, the most decorated senior unit in Rebel soccer history includes Leigh Barrow, Lindley Beckman, Karen Hall, Kristal Menard, Laura Price, and Ramey Rush. Together, the successful six played in a combined 340 matches during their first three years, making the cluster the most experienced class to ever wear the Red and Blue.

Recapping their first three seasons, Barrow played in 53 games and was twice named to the SEC Academic Honor Roll; Beckman participated in 64 games and was selected to the 2003 Academic All-America First Team; Hall saw 62 games of action and led the group with 16 goals; All-America candidate Menard played 63 games and was a two-time All-SEC and All-Region First Team selection; Price took part in 34 games and was named to the 2002 SEC Academic Honor Roll; and Rush boasted 64 games of experience and is the only player to have started every match the last three years.

The senior class expects to meet again this high standard of excellence in its final year on the familiar pitch at Ole Miss Soccer Stadium. With determination as its watchword for the 2004 season, this ensemble looks to add even more distinction to its already full list of accolades.

"We're proud of what we've accomplished," says team co-captain Menard. "Our career at Ole Miss has been exciting, but we want to make our final season the best one yet. We are extremely driven."

"They're hungry," remarks 10th-year head coach Steve Holeman. "They want an SEC West title, and they want an SEC title. This is the most successful senior class we've had at Ole Miss and probably the most talented. They've helped carry this program to a new level."

That level is a high bar which the senior class hopes will serve as a springboard for future success, the dynamics of which the seniors hope will be inherited by the younger classes.

"Our dedication to hard work and our commitment to winning have helped us achieve over the past three years," explains co-captain Beckman. "We've established a team unity that works for us, and we've thrived off it. We'd like to see it continue."

Ole Miss Gear
    Facebook
    Twitter
    Blog
    • Nkemdiche Headlines Retooled D-Line

      Wednesday, August 20, 2014 - Football

      The return of junior defensive end C.J. Johnson and additions of sophomore Fadol Brown and freshman Marquis Haynes have changed the face of the defensive line, but freshman All-American Robert Nkemdiche remains front and center.  With a season of experience... read more

    • The Season: Ole Miss Football Sneak Peak

      Monday, August 18, 2014 - Football

      The Season: Ole Miss Football 2014: Episode 1 Sneak Peak from Ole Miss Rebels on Vimeo.... read more

    • Wallace: 'It's My Offense'

      Monday, August 18, 2014 - Football

      The dean of Southeastern Conferences quarterbacks and the league's leading returner in total offense, passing yards and passing touchdowns, senior Bo Wallace is as healthy and confident as ever, and he's also assumed a more vocal leadership role on the... read more

    • VIDEO: We Are Ole Miss

      Saturday, August 16, 2014 - Athletics

      We Are Ole Miss from Ole Miss Rebels on Vimeo.In case you missed it, "Forward Together: We Are Ole Miss" from earlier this year: Forward Together: We Are Ole Miss from Ole Miss Rebels on Vimeo.... read more

    • VIDEO: Ole Miss Football: Fins Up (Part 2)

      Saturday, August 16, 2014 - Football

      In case you missed it, Fins Up (Part 1) from last year:... read more

    • Rebels Battle Injuries on Defense

      Friday, August 15, 2014 - Football

      Ole Miss head coach Hugh Freeze confirmed that junior cornerback Carlos Davis suffered a torn ACL and will likely have surgery Monday. Davis joins sophomore cornerback Tee Shepard and junior safety Chief Brown on the list of players expected to miss... read more

    • Recapping the SEC Network Launch

      Friday, August 15, 2014 - Athletics

      The launch of the SEC Network shows the growth and vision of the 14 schools in the conference. #OleMiss-- Coach Alex (@apsimms2) August 15, 2014 That was fun! And the @SECNetwork is only getting started. #SECStoried finished strong. Great... read more

    • Ole Miss and the SEC Network Launch

      Thursday, August 14, 2014 - Athletics

      Tonight is the night!! #SECNetworkLaunch pic.twitter.com/73UYs8B0Hg-- SEC Network (@SECNetwork) August 14, 2014 Historic day for SEC & #OleMiss as we celebrate the launch of the @SECNetwork at 5pm CST! Congrats to everyone who made it happen!-- Ross Bjork (@RossBjorkAD) August... read more

    • Luke Breaks Down the Offensive Line

      Wednesday, August 13, 2014 - Football

      The center and right tackle position battles have been two of the biggest story lines of fall camp, but as the Rebels prepped for their second preseason scrimmage Wednesday night, they are closer to solidifying the depth chart along the... read more

    • Attitude, Effort are Front and Center in Process

      Wednesday, August 13, 2014 - Volleyball

      "Buy-in" is a common term thrown around by coaches. How will first-year Ole Miss head volleyball coach Steven McRoberts measure buy-in, as the team continues its preseason work for the upcoming season? Attitude and effort. "If we bring those two... read more

    • The Season: Ole Miss Soccer Day One

      Tuesday, August 12, 2014 - Soccer

      THE SEASON: Soccer - Day One from Ole Miss Rebels on Vimeo.... read more

    • Kennedy Recaps Trip, Talks New-Look Roster

      Tuesday, August 12, 2014 - Men's Basketball

      The Ole Miss men's basketball team wrapped up its Bahamian exhibition tour with a perfect 2-0 record. Head coach Andy Kennedy recapped the trip, talked about the chemistry, depth and experience of a new-look roster heading into the fall. The... read more

    • Looking at CB, OL, WR and RB Depth

      Monday, August 11, 2014 - Football

      Sophomore defensive end Fadol Brown and sophomore cornerback Kailo Moore returned from their respective injuries, while sophomore Tee Shepard remains out with a toe injury. The results from Shepard's MRI performed on Saturday are being sent to Birmingham, head coach... read more

    • Ole Miss Programming on SEC Network

      Monday, August 11, 2014 - Football

      The SEC Network will debut on Thursday, August 14 with a three-hour SEC Now that will visit every SEC school and the 21 sports within the SEC. The first two weeks of the network will also feature customized programming to... read more

    • The Week That Was: Ole Miss Football

      Sunday, August 10, 2014 - Football

      Ole Miss continues its preparations for the the 2014 season with the second full week of fall camp starting Monday. Here's a look back at the first full week of fall camp with some observations and takeaways, as well as... read more