I'm sure you all are out there, trying to get your mid-week fix of news about the Miners and the Rebels this Saturday, so MinerRush has got your back. Have a look at these articles about what going on around both football programs on this fine Wednesday.
After earning a win in Hugh Freeze's first game as head coach, the Ole Miss Rebels attempt to keep that momentum going on Saturday night when they host the Texas-El Paso Miners in non-conference action. UTEP took on Big 12 powerhouse Oklahoma in its season opener in front of its home fans and played about as well as anyone could have expected. The Miners got out to a 7-0 lead early in the first quarter when Nathan Jeffery returned a block punt for a touchdown. They kept the game close throughout, but Oklahoma tacked on a pair of touchdowns in the fourth quarter to pull away and win, 24-7.
There's no denying Ole Miss' offensive line made some mistakes in Saturday's 49-20 victory over Central Arkansas. The challenge in preparing for UTEP on Saturday (6 p.m., FSN) is correcting those problems. "We struggled a little bit with our eyes," co-offensive coordinator and offensive line coach Matt Luke said. "Getting to the right spot in some instances. But it wasn't really one thing or another. The good thing is the mistakes that we made are correctable. It's not a situation where you're getting whipped physically and you don't have any answers."
No, it wasn’t for a mid-game snack for veteran UTEP coach Mike Price. Only Barry Switzer can get by with eating like that on the sidelines, and then, only at the Pro Bowl. But the Miners were treated for cramps, according to the Fox Sports Network broadcast. (Hat tip: Sports by Brooks.com and NBC Sports.com) According to the website Core Performance.com, mustard contains acetic acid, which helps the body produce more acetylcholine. (The mustard is consumed, not applied topically.) Cramps can be caused by a deficiency in acetylcholine, the neurotransmitter that stimulates muscles to work.
It was a welcome development for an Ole Miss program that came into the season on a seven-game losing streak. Now with a notch under the win column -- and a little confidence -- first-year coach Hugh Freeze and his players are trying to improve quickly. The competition only gets tougher. The Rebels (1-0) host UTEP (0-1) on Saturday at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium before an early-season test against Texas on Sept. 15. UTEP played No. 4 Oklahoma tough last weekend before losing 24-7.
"They got after one of the best teams in our nation," Ole Miss coach Hugh Freeze said. "We've got our hands full with them, particularly their d-line and their skill positions."
"I was hopeful I would put on the film and see a team that maybe isn’t playing with great passion, but nothing could be farther from the truth. Coach (Mike) Price has got those guys playing with a lot of passion and heart, and they got after one of the best teams in the country last weekend. We’ve got our hands full, particularly with their D line and their skill positions. They’ve got a tremendous tailback."
"We went for it fourth and one and put them in a bad position earlier in the game. I was disappointed we didn't make that. The fake was there. The play was there. The hole was there. It was the same way in the previous three or four punts, it was a perfect setup and for some reason we practiced it all week and just didn't run it to the right hole. We ran it up the middle instead of off tackle and off tackle was wide open. We did have some kids who were hurt who were on that team. Five of the guys were substitutes. If I was aware of that, it probably would have been enough to say no. It was supposed to go to Nathan Jeffery, but he cramped up and couldn't go and we had to put [Josh] Bell in. If I had known that, in hindsight we shouldn't have done that. But if you look at the tape, it was wide open and would've been a first down. It took whatever momentum we had going in the fourth quarter, and then we had nine plays on offense. Three downs and out, three downs and out, three downs and out. Come on, we've got to do better than that."
And, just in case that's not enough, make sure to go check out our SB Nation sister site, RedCupRebellion.com, which covers Ole Miss Rebel sports.