Rain Check

Ole Miss Coach Houston Nutt decided to put the Rebels in full gear for Thursday's early practice, normally around 11 a.m., but rain and lightning in the Oxford area forced the workout into the IPF. Read about the practice inside.

Ole Miss Tight End Jamal Mosley has made quite an impression in the early going of his Rebel career, but he's not where he wants to be - yet.

Even though he has already gained "starting status" along with returning veteran Ferbia Allen, he feels he can do more.

"I'm getting the offense down and am starting to fly around better. I came in late, and when I first got here, I had a lot to learn," said Mosley, a 6-4, 260-pounder. "I am starting to feel a little better, even though I'm not in top shape and I have about 85% of the offense down pat. I pick up something everyday and I'm trying to soak things up.

"I'm going to do some extra conditioning next week and will be ready for the opener and I feel I'll have a good understanding of the whole offense by then too."

Mosley came to Ole Miss from Northwest Community College and even though he had a stint at Oklahoma State, he has had to adjust to the speed of the game.

"Everybody on this level is fast. The linebackers, safeties, corners can all run and the D-Line comes off the ball hard," he noted. "It's a whole different level here."

Jamal Mosley
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Jamal is impressed with what he has seen on offense to this point, two weeks into August camp.

"Our offensive line is probably the strongest part of the team and our running backs, well, we have four who can play anywhere. We will rally around them," he noted. "Once we settle on a quarterback, we'll be set.

"I don't know who is winning the race right now and I don't have an opinion on who it will be, but whoever gets the job should be able to run with it. Randall (Mackey) keeps plays alive a little longer, but the other two are doing good things too."

While Mosley believes he has to be progressing, there's little doubt he already figures into the Rebel offense.

Coach Houston Nutt wanted to go early in full pads to try to give his team a chance to recuperate a little.

"We're a little leg weary and we have a lot of guys fighting through some things, so we decided to make our early practice the full pad one today," Nutt said. "I was glad to see (MLB) Mike Marry back out here. he looked very good, very physical.

"I can see a big jump in our understanding of the terminology and what we are trying to do, things that were vague to them in the spring. We've been through the whole book and it's a good feeling to see things coming together."

Nutt said he will "let up" a little on the team Friday, but they will come back hard with a full scrimmage Saturday night at 6 in the stadium.

"We'll work our kicking game and touch up on some things Friday and get after it again Saturday. I want them to get their legs back under them a little bit before that scrimmage," he explained.

Saturday's scrimmage is critical.

"This scrimmage will mean quite a bit in determining the pecking order at several positions that are real close right now. It will help determine a lot of things - possibly some redshirt decisions too. We want to see who will take a step for us and keep coming," Houston added. "The scrimmage will be similar to last Saturday's scrimmage, 100-plus plays.

Random Notes:

* While Marry seems to be back in the fold after missing a week or so with a pulled hamstring, and LB Ralph Williams is trying to practice and play on a hobbled ankle, the sidelines got a new member Thursday with LB Joel Kight, who pulled his hamstring Wednesday. Kight is not expected to be out a long time, but he probably will not be back this week.

* TE Alex Williams, who tore the ACL in his right knee in last week's scrimmage, will be operated on August 25th. He is out for the season.

* CB Senquez Golson did not make Thursday's big practice - he was headed back to Oxford from the Coast, but he will be dressed out for tomorrow's workout. His return was delayed by some unexpected car trouble, we were told.

* DE Kentrell Lockett was his old, frisky self in Thursday's workout. At one point during practice, he yelled over to the sidelines, "Finally, I feel good!" Everyone knew it would take a couple of weeks for him to get his football legs back under him and it seems he has hit that mark now if Thursday was an indication. When Lockett feels "right," he's chattering, leading and making plays. Thursday was really the first time we have seen and heard the old Lockett emerge.

* With Williams not participating in full speed drills, and Kight out, freshman Keith Lewis got number one reps most of the day at outside linebacker. Reps he needs. Sometimes there is a silver lining in players getting nicked up and missing some practice.

* The battles at 'X' and 'Z' of the wide receiver corps continue. Thursday, Donte Moncrief was ahead of Vincent Sanders at 'X' and Ja-Mes Logan was ahead of Nick Brassell and Tobias Singleton at 'Z." One gets the feeling, however, that all of those guys will play when the season rolls around and be included in the WR rotation.

* S/OLB Denzel Nkemdiche has been struggling some with a pulled hamstring, but Thursday he looked more spry and more like himself. Time for him to show his wares without injury limitations.

Joel Kight
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* Barry Brunetti got a larger portion of number one reps at QB Thursday, but both Mackey and Zack Stoudt got their share as well. That position battle is truly day-to-day.

* Still not practicing: DE Carlos Thompson (hip flexor), DT Gilbert Pena (broken hand), DT Uriah Grant (groin), DE Jason Jones (knee), WR Melvin Harris (back), OL Josh Tatum (concussion) and LB Joel Kight (hamstring). "The bad thing is they are missing valuable work. The good thing is that we expect all of them back for the first week and some of them back next week," said Nutt.

* Safety Tanner Burns' waiver to allow him to be immediately eligible after transferring in from Kansas State to follow his Dad, Keith, to Ole Miss, was sent in yesterday. The word around campus is they hope to have word within two weeks. There is a great deal of optimism about the waiver being granted, even though this is Tanner's second transfer request in as many years. There is a precedent of similar cases being granted.

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