As expected, several Rebels were not dressed out for practice Tuesday. That's the bad news. The good news is that most are anticipated to be ready for the game against Vanderbilt Saturday.

When Ole Miss Coach Hugh Freeze stood before the media at his Monday press conference and said "the list of injured is long," he was not exaggerating.

Freeze did not get into specifics at the presser, but eight players did not practice Tuesday, and that did not include WR Collins Moore who is out for the year with shoulder problems.

The good news is that most are expected to be available for Saturday's SEC contest with Vanderbilt if treatment is successful.

C.J. Johnson
File Photo

And, while they didn't participate physically in practice, they were all attentively taking mental reps during the two-hour workout.

The Rebel run game started the season very effectively. In the last game and a half, the run game has been controlled by the opposition. Freeze's thoughts?

"We have lost the edge a little bit up front," Freeze said. "I think some of it has to do with the gameplanning our opponents have done against us. We ran the ball effectively first half against Arkansas, but they ran some things in the second half that gave us problems.

"Against Georgia, it was a whole different animal. Looking at the film, I'd call the same runs again. They just beat us. I am anxious to see how our O-Line bounces back this week."

Vandy presents yet another challenge with their defense, ranked highly in the SEC in most defensive categories.

"They are a talented team, but more impressive than that is how hard they play," Hugh continued. "Our OL has its hands full and we are beat up there a little bit. It's a big challenge, but I assure you nobody has a greater desire to prepare to run the ball than (OL Coach) Matt Luke and myself this week. We are trying to get a great plan together to do that.

"Vanderbilt understands who they are and what they need to do. They don't make many mistakes. They are a zone fire team and they bring inside pressure with good disguises, as good as anyone. They bring field and boundary pressure. It is the same stuff we have seen, but they run them well and their kids play every play extremely hard. Effort is a big deal with them and they get a lot out of their kids."

Random Notes:

* Here's the walking wounded list. OG Aaron Morris (shoulder); CB Wesley Pendleton (ankle); LB Aaron Garbutt (flu-like illness); CB Senquez Golson (concussion); LB Keith Lewis (shoulder); DE C.J. Johnson (toe); S Trae Elston (toe); Slot Receiver Philander Moore (foot). It's too early to anticipate who will play and who won't, but there seemed to be some optimism about mostly speedy recoveries. "Garbutt will not be able to go. Senquez will practice tomorrow. We're not sure on Wesley Pendlteon. C.J., Aaron Morris and Trae are hopeful - we expect them to try to play," Freeze noted. "Keith Lewis is hopeful too, but he's further behind the others. We will just have to go next-man-up and get them ready. Hopefully, most of them will come back and be able to get some reps this week."

' * How effective can players be if they miss a lot of work? Freeze said it depends on the position. "Some positions require a lot of reps to get it all down. Some positions don't. Linebacker, with our run fits, needs a lot, as do offensive linemen," he noted.

* Worst case scenario and the injured do not make it back, the replacements for them today in practice followed the most recent depth chart. Jared Duke for Morris, Cliff Coleman/Quintavius Burdette for Golson, Serderius Bryant for Lewis; Jason Jones for C.J.; Frank Crawford for Elston. (Pendleton and P. Moore are backups right now.)

* QB Bo Wallace worked out Tuesday and was throwing the ball with good velocity, showing no signs of any carryover from the tough hit he took on his shoulder at Georgia. He said Monday that his shoulder hurt some, but it was no different than any other time this year - it's been bothering him all year.

* CB Charles Sawyer was listed on Sunday's injury report, but he was practicing full speed Tuesday.

* For some reason, Freeze's friendly phone call to Vandy Coach James Franklin Monday drew a lot of attention. He says it's something he does regularly to coaches coming to Oxford. "It depends on how well I know a guy. I am just extending the courtesy of telling them if they need anything coming this way, let us know," he explained. "Coach Franklin and I know each other. He had called me earlier in the year when Bo Wallace's sister had her wreck. It was just something I thought was appropriate. I like to do that."

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