Practice Report: Dress Rehearsal Thursday

Dress Rehearsal Thursday went well, according to the Ole Miss coaches. Although head coach David Cutcliffe doesn't speak to the media after Thursday practices during the season because of his radio show, it was fairly obvious from his reaction and conversation as he left the field that he felt good about things.

Assistant coaches Chuck Driesbach and John Latina did, however, have some things to say after the two-hour session on Jerry Hollingsworth Field inside Vaught-Hemingway Stadium. Mostly the two coordinators were positive in their assessments.

"We worked a couple of situations and then we let the graduate assistants pick out any plays they want to run and run them against us," Driesbach said. "They make the call and we have no idea what they are going to call against us. It looked like we had people in the right spots and doing the right things."

Driesbach says it's gametime and everybody knows it.

"With the format now, camp is extremely long," he said. "It's been a full month. Everybody's ready to stop practicing and play a game. Certainly the coaches are, and I know the players are too." Latina said today went well and the last minute details are all being checked out.

"It looked like our assignments were good and our alignments were good," he said. "We threw it well and caught it well, and looked a little sharper today, which is what you expect on Dress Rehearsal Thursday. Our focus has continually gotten better. I think it showed today as our kids executed and showed they know what we are trying to get done."

While the practice today in shorts and no pads didn't look perhaps quite as intense as those in full gear, the coordinators say it still was.

"We always want it to still be intense as we try to simulate the game," Driesbach said.

"This practice is to give them a lot of situations," Latina said. "Red zone offense, goal line offense, third down offense, just a lot of scenarios that will occur in the game and the actual things we're going to call in a game. So it's rehearsing the gameplan."

Latina said he feels confident that QB Micheal Spurlock is ready for a game as well.

"Micheal just has to go out and play confidently now," he said. "He just needs to go out and play like he practices and not put any pressure on himself. He just needs to be himself, and that's all you can ask a young man to do."

The Rebels worked on all types of special teams situations early in the practice. Later, as Driesbach was earlier explaining, the ones faced the ones for the graduate assistant drills that seemed to be effective in getting players to focus on the situation at hand and react as they would in a game.

On the injury front, nothing much has changed. Daniel Booth is still most likely out for this game with the calf injury which is improving. Taye Biddle is set to go. Kerry Johnson will play with a padded, wrapped hand, as reported earlier today by Chuck. His hamstring continues to improve as well.

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