Role Definition

Ole Miss head coach Hugh Freeze said Wednesday his football team has undoubtedly been made better with the addition of Jeremy Liggins.


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But the question remains: What's his position?

Liggins, whose signing was made official on National Signing Day, enrolled at Ole Miss in January after he was granted a waiver by both the NCAA and the SEC to play immediately. He still has to achieve a minimum GPA in order to play in the fall, but as it stands, he is an acting member of the roster and is set to participate in spring practices.

According to Freeze, Liggins will rotate between quarterback and tight end in the spring. His current weight is over 300 pounds.

"I'm not sure exactly where he fits yet, but I know he improved our football team," Freeze said. "What a great talent he is and he's a winner. I love what I see from his work ethic right now."

Liggins signed with LSU in December of 2011. However, he was ruled academically ineligible, and after briefly enrolling at Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College, he spent two semesters at Northeast, where he played quarterback and defensive end.

In three games at defensive end, Liggins totaled 14 tackles and a sack. He saw action in four games at quarterback, finishing with over 560 yards of offense and six touchdowns.

"He'll split time at the start of spring at tight end and quarterback," Freeze said. "We'll see what he can do functionally at the quarterback position. We've had the need for a bigger, physical tight end. We sure hope he's the answer to that."


Jeremy Liggins, circa 2011
File Photo

Liggis was a coveted quarterback prospect coming out of Lafayette (Miss.) High School. He led the Commodores to 32 consecutive wins and two state championships.

Liggins, who concluded his high school career with a 46-2 overall record, was rated the No. 19 quarterback in the country by Scout.com. He passed for 1,678 yards and 16 touchdowns as a senior, while rushing for 953 yards and 18 touchdowns.

"I've watched an enormous amount of tape on Jeremy throughout the years. The guy was a great competitor in high school and lost one football game, I believe," Freeze said. "So he knows how to win. You watch one tape and he's coming off the edge getting sacks at defensive end. Then you watch another tape and he's throwing touchdowns or scrambling for big runs."

Two-year starter Bo Wallace returns under center for Ole Miss in 2014-15. The Rebels were 8-5 last season, including a 25-17 win over Georgia Tech in the Music City Bowl in Nashville, Tenn., in December.

Behind Wallace is a pair of former four-star prospects in Devante Kincade and Ryan Buchanan, each of which is vying to become Wallace's primary backup.

There's also the now-vacated role once played by since-graduated Barry Brunetti, a situational quarterback in his senior season. He played in all 12 games, and his four rushing touchdowns were third-best on the team. He was fifth with 310 rushing yards, and he passed for 294 yards and six touchdowns.

Is Liggins the logical replacement? Possibly. Freeze isn't ruling anything out.

"For a guy that's his size to do some of the things he does, you know athletically he can improve your football team," Freeze said. "I love what I see from him. He's come full circle the last couple of years. Has a smile on his face. Loves being at Ole Miss and competing for a spot."

Wherever that spot may be.


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