New Life

Jamal Mosley had little to say Sunday about last season, his first at Ole Miss.

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The Rebels finished 2-10, and Mosley, who was expected to be a key member of the offense, had little impact. He finished the year with just 12 catches for 166 yards and one touchdown. One of his lone bright spots was a 61-yard catch against in-state rival Mississippi State in the final game of the season.

Mosley was asked about his frustration level from being underutilized last season. He declined comment, laughed, and then shared a few thoughts before moving on.

"It was very frustrating, man," he said. "It was very frustrating."

Months later, Mosley has some added pep in his step. He's excited. New Ole Miss head coach Hugh Freeze was hired in December to replace Houston Nutt, and Freeze is bringing with him a fast-paced offense well-suited for Mosley.

"I could have a big role in this offense, I think," Mosley said. "No-huddle spread, we'll be the first team to run that in the SEC. It involves the tight end a lot, and I think I can come in and get a lot of catches in this offense."

Freeze was the head coach at Arkansas State in 2011, leading the Red Wolves to a 10-2 season and Sun Belt Conference championship. His offense finished the season ranked in the top-25 in the nation in total offense and passing offense.

In his offense, the No. 1 personnel group is 11 personnel, which includes one tight end and three receivers. Tight ends coach Maurice Harris said the tight end is used in a number of ways, be it flexed out as a wide receiver against smaller cornerbacks, at fullback or any position in between.

Maurice Harris
Chuck Rounsaville

"We want defensive coordinators not to have a clue what we're going to line up in," he said. "With that being said, a lot of times all we get is base defense because they don't know what formation we're going to line up in.

"It's very important for (the tight ends) to come in and know what we're doing and be able to execute it on a day-to-day basis."

Freeze said the staff has to get the 6-foot-4, 260-pound Mosley involved.

Mosley, formerly of Oklahoma State and Northwest Community College, played in 11 games last season with seven starts. He missed some time due to a knee injury.

"He's a kid we've got to use in pretty much every spot we can put him," Freeze said. "He's an athletic guy. I think he could be huge in this. We want to flex him out; we want to match him up in space on people. He's big enough to do all the stuff inside, too. I think he's an NFL body. His effort's been good. I think he'd fit really well with what we do."

"You can do so much with him," Harris said. "He's a force to be reckoned with in the passing game. You think about him being 6-4 and going against a 5-9, 5-10 corner, he's a mismatch. Run a slant, they're just playing basketball. He's posting those guys up."

Mosley said through three practices, including Sunday's full-pad session, he's probably lined up in "six or seven different places." He's been in the backfield, flexed out wide and in the slot. Basically, wherever he's needed.

And the up-tempo pace to practices hasn't slowed him down. Oklahoma State ran the spread in his freshman season in 2009. He's familiar with it.

"It's going to be exciting, man," he said. "No-huddle spread in the SEC? Arkansas runs the no-huddle. But the no-huddle spread's going to be big time in the SEC. I think we can put up a bunch of points on a lot of people."

He's putting the frustrations of last season in the rearview mirror. This is his last season in Oxford, and Mosley has something to prove.

"Last year was just bad. We didn't know our identity as an offense and things just turned out bad," he said. "It was not like how I planned it out to be. In this offense right here, I think I got a new shot. Hopefully I can come in and make some big plays."

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