Rebel Center Ben Still believes the offensive line improved against New Mexico State

Due to Robert Conyers' nagging knee injury, Ben Still got his first start of the 2015 campaign at center against the Aggies of New Mexico State. He was pleased with his play and with the progress he felt the offensive line made from the Florida game.

"Florida was kind of a wake up call for us. We got our act back together and played a lot better against New Mexico State from an execution standpoint," noted Still, who is likely to start again at center against Memphis this Saturday morning in Liberty Bowl Stadium. "We just looked like we knew what we were doing on film. It wasn't about New Mexico State, it was about us doing what we were supposed to do.

"We need that mode to continue. We will practice hard this week and hopefully play well against Memphis.”

Ben said he felt the Rebels got swept away in the Gator environment and lost focus.

"When a game gets emotional like that, you have to stay tuned in and focused. I could see we lost some of our intensity in that environment," he claimed. "Hopefully we have that behind us.”

Still "felt good" against New Mexico State depsite not having played extensively since last year.

"I did my best to fill Robert's shoes. It felt good to et back out there and show the coaches what I can do," he continued. "I am anxious to play some more. I want Robert to get healthy, but I'd like to spell him more too when he comes back. I felt really good against New Mexico, as I said. I felt like I was at game speed early in the game, which felt good.”

Still is from Memphis - Memphis University School to be exact, and he looks forward to headed home, even though this will be a different Memphis team than he grew up with.

"I was always a Tennessee fan growing up because my Father played there, but Memphis wasn't very good most of the time either," he explained. "Now, they are real good. This will be a great game - two Top 25 programs. We have to be ready to play good football because they will be pumped up and will come at us strong.”

The Rebels won last year's meeting 24-3 in Oxford, but only led 7-3 into the fourth quarter.

"I remember they had a big, strong, quick D-Line. They play a 30 front and walk their outside linebackers up to give it a five-man front look. They were a lot better on defense than we expected last year, but I don't think they will sneak up on us this year," Still stated. "We will know what to expect. Their nose tackle is big and strong again, a good player. We will have to have a good game.”

Memphis lost a lot of starters on defense from last year, but Still has been watching Tiger film and he sees quality on their defensive front.

"They have good players. Their defense has struggled a little this year, but they are starting to get it together and play better. They had a really good game against South Florida and we expect that level of play against us as well," he noted. "They move around and stunt a lot, so we have to be focused and ready to take care of how they attack us.

"The main thing will be to maintain our focus when the environment gets tough to deal with. I think we learned our lesson in Gainesville."


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