Jackson Has Respect for Ole Miss Athletes

Auburn's senior noseguard gives a scouting report on the Rebels and discusses his team with Ole Miss coming to town.

Auburn, Ala.--Senior noseguard Tommy Jackson is eager to get back on the football field this Saturday as the Ole Miss Rebels come to Jordan-Hare Stadium for an SEC West football battle vs. the Auburn Tigers.

"Once you lose a game, the only thing you can think about is getting back out on the field and playing again," says Jackson, whose Tigers lost a heartbreaker, 20-17, in overtime at LSU last Saturday night.

The Auburn senior won't have to wait to suit up for the Rebels after he awakens on Saturday. The Tigers have a brunch kickoff, starting at 11:30 a.m. for regional television coverage on JP.

The last time the Rebels came to Jordan-Hare Stadium they edged the Tigers 24-20 in a game that knocked the Tigers out of the SEC race. Jackson notes the older players on his team haven't forgotten what happened two seasons ago vs. the Rebels and will be determined to avoid a repeat.

"One thing is we remember the feeling," Jackson says. "We have to be ready to go. This is the SEC so you have to go out there ready to play hard every game."

Even though Ole Miss is just 3-4 overall, Jackson says the Tigers are taking this opponent seriously.

"Their quarterback (Michael Spurlock) is real athletic," Jackson notes. "He is probably the most athletic one we will see this whole year. Their offensive front plays really good together and they play hard.

"Their freshman tailback (Mico McSwain) is super fast," Jackson adds. "I don't think we have seen a back that fast this year. I think he may be a little faster than McFadden (Darren McFadden of Arkansas)."

Jackson hopes he will be celebrating a victory on Saturday night.

Defensive line coach Don Dunn says that he likes the job that Jackson did vs. LSU. "I thought it was one of his best games," the veteran coach says. Jackson was in on five tackles, deflected a pass and kept the Bayou Bengals from having a lot of success running up the middle.

Jackson and this fellow defensive linemen more than held their own last week against LSU's offensive line, which may be the most talented group the Tigers will face this season. "When went back and watched film, we were proud of the way we played against their offensive line, but at the same time we want to get better," Jackson says. "Their group has been playing together for a long time and we have a lot of first-year starters up front. We are trying to be solid up front. As long as we keep playing that way we will be fine."

Saturday's game for Jackson will be his next to last at Auburn's home stadium. "Sometimes it still feels like I am a freshman," he says. "Wow. It has just flown by."

Jackson is eager to play some football in Atlanta after the regular season, starting with a trip to the SEC Championship at the Georgia Dome, which will also be the site for the Sugar Bowl with New Orleans still not recovered from hurricane damage.

"We are still on the road to go to Atlanta," he says. "We have to try to play our best to make sure we win the rest of our games."


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