Receivers Ready

Grant Heard, former Rebel wide receiver and current coach of the same position, said it’s been life as usual - as much as possible - following the close loss to Auburn and the season-ending injury to Laquon Treadwell.

“It’s been great,” he said of the way the players have gone about shaking off back to back setbacks – including the loss two weeks ago to LSU. “Energetic. Working hard. No difference.”

With one major exception. Treadwell is no longer available.

Heard said the Rebels’ sophomore star wide receiver is handling things well, although he knows he wants to be on the field.

“He’s good. His mom’s in town, and there’s nothing like having mom’s love close by,” Heard said. “But he’s a competitor, and naturally he wants to be out there competing. He’s done well. And I know he’s looking forward to getting back out there.”

Ole Miss head coach Hugh Freeze said he’ll now have additional help “coaching” the Rebels and getting them ready for the remaining games.

"He's doing better,” Freeze said of Treadwell. “He came around a lot today and was pretty sore, but he's ready to help coach our receivers and get back with us.”

While Treadwell isn’t available for action and won’t be through the remainder of the regular season and bowl game, others are stepping up. But they already had been doing that, according to Heard.

“We had to move some people around, but it’s not as drastic as people think,” he said. “Putting Cody (Core) outside, he’s been there the first two years. So that’s simply easy. Quincy (Adeboyejo) can go inside. They’re all interchangeable. So it’s not a big deal to us.

“It’s ‘next man up.’ We’ve just got to keep rolling.”

This week they’ll be rolling into the Presbyterian College team as the Blue Hose come to Oxford for an 11 a.m. game. Heard looks forward to seeing his guys continue to compete.

“Always when somebody goes down, somebody else is going to get more of a shot,” he said of the numbers game as far as how many receivers are available and how many passes are thrown. “I just tell them that whenever your number is called, and I’ve been telling them this all year, whether you get one ball thrown to you or a hundred, make the most out of your opportunity.

“Whenever you get the chance, make the most of it. And they’re going to get more opportunities, of course, and hopefully they’ll make the most out of them.”

Hearing More From Heard:

* On Markell Pack: “Great potential. He is going to be special. He’s still a freshman, and sometimes I forget that, especially this time of year. I see him every day, so I forget that this time last year he was playing for Purvis (High). He’s still got a lot to learn, but he’s come a long way. As long as he keeps getting better every week, I expect him to be a really good player in time.”

* On Vince Sanders: “I don’t think his role has changed. All my guys have looked up to him. For one thing, him being the senior, plus he’s not the vocal leader. He’s a leader that just goes out and works hard. Him stepping into that role is not anything new. I think he’s trying to step up a little bit more, maybe. My guys respect him and look up to him, because he’s been through more wars than anybody in that room. He’s the grandfather of my room. I know he’s going to do a good job and make sure my guys are ready to go Saturday.”

* On the redshirt receivers: “You know this time of year I don’t get to see them that much because they are out there with the scout team. But talking to the defensive guys, they’re working their butts off. I try to talk to them and let them know they are going against one of the best defenses in the country every day. This is their chance to work on their craft, and it’s an opportunity to get better so make the most out of it. The defensive coaches tell me they’re awesome down there. All I ask them to do is go down there and compete. Whether you’re on the starting team or the scout team, compete.”

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