Leading The Way

Trae Elston is out for the first half of the Texas A&M game Saturday night in College Station. That will mean some adjustment in personnel in the defensive backfield for that half.

Senquez Golson said it remains to be seen how the coaches will handle that situation concerning who will play.

“I’m not sure who is going to end up being in his spot,” said Golson, whose interception in the final minute of the game last weekend saved it for Ole Miss 23-17 over Alabama. “I’m sure we’ll figure it out at practice (Tuesday). It’s going to be a big adjustment. I’m pretty sure whoever is there we’ll have them ready to go.”

That will be a necessity. The Aggies can light up the scoreboard through the air.

“We’re excited to play a game where they throw maybe 40 or 50 passes,” Golson said. “It’ll be our first true test for the secondary. So we’re excited about the challenge.”

Golson said he believes in everyone on the Rebels’ vaunted defense, and that’s certainly the case for the backfield.

“Everybody in our secondary I’ve got complete confidence in,” the Pascagoula High School product said. “We’re going to be ready to play.”

Against Alabama, the Rebel defense was able to keep the Crimson Tide offense at bay for much of the game. Star Bama receiver Amari Cooper had nine catches for 91 yards but no touchdowns. He is the Tide’s top threat on offense.

“We had a good plan on (Amari Cooper),” Golson said. “Coach (Dave) Wommack came up with an incredible plan, and the players did a great job of focusing in all week. And we executed well.”

Since his game-saving interception Saturday, Golson said life has been good. Different, but good.

“It’s been a little crazy,” he said. “But it’s time to start slowing things down and get ready for A&M.”

Texas A&M quarterback Kenny Hill has done an excellent job replacing Johnny Manziel. Golson has great respect for Hill but says he’s a different quarterback than Manziel.

"I don’t think we have to worry about him running as much as Manziel, who was a running threat,” he said. “They’ve got some great receivers and a great offense.”

The past two seasons the Aggies have played in Oxford. This is the first visit to Kyle Field for Ole Miss since 1975 when A&M was a member of the old Southwest Conference. The Ags won that one 7-0.

The past two seasons Ole Miss has had opportunities to win both games but failed to do so, falling 30-27 in 2012 and 41-38 in 2013.

“That’s the thing we’ve talked about,” Golson said. “A play here or there in a lot of different games and we win. We’re getting tired of it going the other way. So we’re going to focus in and be ready to play.”

Being ready to play and even practice this week means putting the great win over Alabama behind them. Golson said they will do that.

“Obviously for a lot of years we haven’t really had a lot of success (against the Crimson Tide),” he said. “(That was) our first real success as far as big games. I’m ready to see how we’re going to handle it. But I’m pretty sure with the experience we’ve got we’re going to put it behind us and get ready for A&M.

Golson has four interceptions through five games. He’s made some other big plays as well. He likes how things have gone for him.

“Football’s been pretty good to me so far,” he said. “I’ve just got to stay focused and keep it rolling.”

Could there be Rebel baseball next spring in his future? Or has football developed so that he might think about shelving the baseball plans and focusing on the NFL draft?

“As of right now I will be playing baseball in the spring,” Golson said. “I guess we’ll just see how the rest of the (football) season goes and make a decision at the end of the bowl game.”


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