Tuesday Practice Report -

Rebel Coach David Cutcliffe said the Rebs needed some contact work headed into the heated rivalry known as the Egg Bowl, but he didn't want to risk injury by being too physical. Despite caution, Rebel WR Bill Flowers rolled his ankle in a non-contact drill.

Ole Miss practiced in full pads today in Vaught-Hemingway Stadium, but Coach David Cutcliffe limited contact due to health concerns of the team. In the final period, which is reserved for best against best each day in order to simulate true game speed, he had the players take off their shoulder pads.

"We are still pretty bruised up from the LSU game and from the cumulative affects of the season, but we understand how intense the game Saturday is going to be. We wanted to keep our edge in contact, but we had to be careful not to do too much in way of contact, but still staying sharp in that area.

"I can see the players starting to get their focus - they have a sense of urgency and excitement because they realize how important this game is to their school. And they know Mississippi State is going to come in here at the top of their game. This team has struggled this year, and it hurts all of us. I can see that they want to end the year on a high note."

Despite Cutcliffe's caution, WR Bill Flowers turned an ankle today in a non-contact drill. Flowers said he doesn't think it is a severe sprain, but it swelled up quickly. He sat out the last five periods or so of practice with an ice pack on the ankle. He will undergo extensive treatment beginning tonight.

Starting CB Trumaine McBride missed practice today in order to attend the funeral of a family member. He will return tomorrow. In his place, Nate Banks worked with the number one defense.

OT Bobby Harris (ankle/knee) and DE Corvelli Haynes (shoulder) did not practice today, but they are expected to get some work tomorrow. DE Cory Robinson (neck) practiced in a yellow jersey today, but went through some of the individual contact work.

There will be a number of players who will play against Mississippi State who will not be 100%, but everyone will give it a shot except DE Jayme Mitchell, who has a broken foot, and DE Corey Mills, who is out with a groin injury.

In Harris' absence, backup LG James McCoy moved to number one right guard, Marcus Johnson moved out to RT and Tre' Stalling smoved to LT. (Tony Bonds was at number one RG yesterday, but he's still struggling with a shoulder injury and could not work in full contact today. His status for the Egg Bowl is questionable.)

Redshirt DE Chris Bowers won the Junior Ironman competition which concluded yesterday. Redshirt WR Mico McSwain came in second in the overall competition. . . A couple of notes on the true freshman class. OL Maurice Miller and Tim Henderson have both lost nearly 40 pounds since they have been on campus. Miller is now down to 327 pounds while Henderson is 314. Miller benched 225 pounds 19 times yesterday and has trimmed his body fat from 25% to 20%. Henderson has also trimmed his body fat to 20%. S Jamarcus Sanford benched 225 pounds 21 times. CB Terrell Jackson had a 40" vertical jump and a 10' 3 1/2" broad jump. McSwain had a 38 1/2" VJ and 10' 4 1/2" broad jump. We'll try to get some more superlatives in the next day or two.

Coach Cutcliffe said the quarterbacks and receivers did a much better job in the passing game today than they have in the past few weeks. "We threw the ball with authority and decisiveness today. We were more consistent. That was good to see," he noted.

With Haynes, Mitchell and Mills out at the DE slots, the ranks are thin. Haynes is expected to come back for the MSU game, but how effective he will be remains to be seen. In the meantime, RS freshman Brandon Jenkins and a banged up Cory Robinson are the starters. They will be backed up by Dedrick Clark and Viciente DeLoach.

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