Inept

Saw it with my own two eyes, weakened by age, but still good enough to notice Rebel fans filing out late in the first quarter of the 52-3 shelling of Ole Miss by LSU. By the end of the game, only relatives of the team were there, it seemed.

There's really not much to say about the Ole Miss-LSU "game."

Why? Because it was over before it got started good. Ten minutes in, the Rebels - totally outclassed by the number one team in the country - were down 21-0 and the packed house started thinning.

Yes, fans started leaving in the first quarter. They were the smart ones.

They didn't have to witness the rest of the worst Rebel debacle in the history of the hallowed rivalry.

Number one versus number. . . well. . . . number last.

And so the beat of 2011 kept going.

LSU was much better than the Rebels, we say in a "duh" moment, but that notwithstanding, Ole Miss continued their self-destructive ways with an early pick 6 thrown by starter Zack Stoudt, getting the nod for the suspended Randall Mackey (thanks, Randall), a couple of more turnovers - one fumble in the end zone that LSU covered for a TD to make it 28-0, and numerous penalties - not the hustling kind, the dumb kind.

Ad nauseum.

"It's one thing to play the number one team in the nation, it's another to give them 17 points from the quarterback position," said Rebel Offensive Coordinator David Lee. "That's what we did.

"Our plan was to run right at them, that's what you do against speed. The second part was to get it out fast when we threw. A pick six early, a couple of key fumbles and there you go."

How bad did it get? On one drive, the Rebels ran 10 plays, starting at their 22. They netted 18 yards, but gained 43. How is that possible? Throw 25 yards of penalties, on three infractions, in the mix and it's easy.

The Rebels gained a paltry 195 yards on the game and mananged just, oh hell, who cares?

The one bright spot may have been the play of QB Barry Brunetti, even though by the time he entered the game, it was already decided for all intents and purposes.

Brunetti ran for a net of 74 yards and completed 5-10 passes for 30 yards.

"He'll start against Mississippi State," said Lee. "I was encouraged by the way he played. We'll sharpen him up and give him all the reps this week and have him ready for MSU."


Spencer Ware
Bruce Newman

Brunetti actually gained 97 yards on 15 carries, but the times he was sacked cost him 23 of those yards on the stat sheet.

"He moved the ball, and a lot of times it was on his own," Lee continued. "He did a good job with the read option, the power read, the zone read, the counter T read - he handled things well, for the most part. I know you are ultimately judged by the points you score, but I was pleased with the way he played."

Considering Brunetti had not played since he started the BYU game, not bad, not bad at all.

"Barry does all the right things on and off the field, but he just wasn't ready. He threw into coverage in practice a lot and had a lot to learn," Lee noted. "He got lost in the shuffle when Randall started coming around. We couldn't give him many practice reps, but he never got down. He kept working and preparing like he was the starter. He's young, but he's a good runner and can throw better than you think. We just have to make sure he's not throwing into coverage."

Lee believes the Rebels will be ready to play in the Egg Bowl.

"We will get back-to-back and pull together. We've got good kids on this team and I think this next game means a lot to them," Lee closed.

Defensive Coordinator Tyrone Nix took a different approach to the LSU game.

He basically has decided to ignore it.

"I'm not looking at this film. I am going to work tomorrow, maybe tonight, on Mississippi State," said Nix. "We didn't make many defensive plays.

"I'm putting this one away. We have one opportunity left - the Egg Bowl - and that is where I am putting all my focus and energy. I want badly to send these kids out on a good note and to do that we have to beat MSU."

LSU rambled for 458 yards, 353 of those on the ground and, oh hell, who cares?

LSU Coach Les Miles, we assume, felt sorry for the Rebels, taking a knee four times straight late in the game after having the ball first-and-goal from the Rebel 1.

Some felt it was adding insult to injury. Nix disagrees.

"To me, Coach Miles showed a lot of respect for Houston Nutt. He's probably been there at some point in his career. He understands," Nix deciphered the situation.

About the only thing that perked Nix up postgame was the mention of the numerous freshmen who played against the Tigers.

"The freshmen make mistakes at times, but they are going to be a special group. The next two years, you come back and watch them. They will be a special defense," he stated. "They will work hard to help send the seniors out on a good note. They will compete."

Two frosh, S Cody Prewitt and CB Senquez Golson, led the Rebs in tackles with 9 and 8, respectively.

The Rebels sustained two injuries in the game - freshman LB Keith Lewis has a stinger and WR/KOR/PR Philander Moore had an abdomen injury. The extent of those injuries is unclear right now.

The extent of the injury to the Rebs' psyche will not be known until the Egg Bowl.


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