Much of the struggle in stopping opposing running backs this season has been a result of linebackers failing to fit their assigned gaps. also called run fits. Ole Miss head coach Hugh Freeze said he didn't know why his defense wasn't grasping and executing the emphasis on run fits at his weekly press conference on Monday, but he and his staff are trying a new approach.
"(Defensive graduate assistant) Christian Robinson is going to take the mike linebackers this week and coach them from this point forward," Freeze said. "Dave will handle the stingers to try to get more attention to them in practice.
There were times it was done correctly and we had success. There's times there wasn't. There's times it wasn't necessarily the linebackers fits. We had three critical third downs. One on the five-yard line with the option and two others on drives they scored on where we had good calls and an unblocked guy and he misses the tackle."
Freeze hopes putting "another set of eyes" on one of the linebacker positions will help the Rebels improve with run fits. Ole Miss faces LSU's stable of talented running backs on Saturday led by sophomore Derrius Guice and junior Leonard Fournette, who is expected to play against the Rebels after sitting out three games with an ankle injury. The Tigers are currently ranked 24th in the country in rushing offense with 1,368 yards and 14 touchdowns on the season.
Ole Miss faces LSU in Baton Rouge on Saturday. Kickoff is set for 8 p.m. CT on ESPN.