"I'm just ready to get to Ole Miss"
McPhadden was ranked as the #12 offensive linemen in the country by scout.com headed into his senior year. Aubrey even transferred from Andrew Jackson to First Coast so he could develop more on and off the field. All the steps were in place for a bright future. And the final chapter was added to the book when he signed with Bobby Bowden and the Florida State Seminols.
"Yea, I was feeling real good about that time. You almost felt invincible. I mean, everyone was treating you like you were the president or something. I was doing so well in school, football, and my social life was great. Man, it almost seems like yesterday," commented they daydreaming Aubrey McPhadden.
Then life took a U turn.
Aubrey came up one point shy on his ACT test score and had to detour to East MS CC.
"At first, I was just in shock. All of my buddies were going to Miami, Florida State, and Florida, and here I was going to some small country town in Mississippi playing juco ball. It was hard to swallow. I will not lie."
And things would get even worse.
"I found out last summer that they could only have so many players on scholarship, something messed up like that. I do not know. Basically I was not going to be put on scholarship, so I could not play this year. I think when I found that out, it was pretty much the low point of my life."
But then Aubrey took the good out of the bad.
"What it did do was give me an extra year of eligibility, and it also let my body heal up from all of the years of banging around. So I just decided to look at the positives."
McPhadden had a scholarship waiting on him at the University of Mississippi and things seemed to have turned for the better. He was set to graduate in December but failed to get in a couple of correspondence courses due to lack of finances.
"I just did not save the money. It was a mistake on my part. Really, it was a bad mistake. Now I have to go here (East MS CC) for another semester. I will take some correspondence courses so I can get everything straight. I can not tell you how ready I am to get up to Ole Miss. I talk to Korey (Raymond) a lot, and he tells me how much he likes it. That makes me want to get up there even more."
In the meantime, Aubrey is trying to keep himself in top condition and stay on top of his grades.
"I do a lot of lifting and running everyday. I do more reps, than maxing out. I do 225 (lbs) around 20 to 22 reps. With my legs, I do 17 reps of 350. I am trying to keep in good condition, more than build up. I am at 325 right now, so that is a good weight for me. I just want to be in as good of shape as I can be when I report to Ole Miss. I go to classes now. I have not missed a class this semester. I am not perfect by any means, but I think I have learned a lot through all of this. And the most important thing I have learned is that if you do not pass, you do not play. I guess you can say I have learned through my mistakes."
How long does Aubrey expect it to be before he is back to where he was before he took the year away from football?
"Really, I figure two months should get me back to where I was. I just need to get use to the speed of the game again, and learn the new play book "
The Rebels have hired a new offensive line coach since Aubrey committed to Ole Miss; just what are Aubrey's thoughts on Coach Kehoe?
"Coach Kehoe, he is a good guy. I have known him for a while. I use to go to his down and dirty camps in high school. He is a lot of fun to be around. He actually came down to see me the other day. I had not seen him a long time. He is a good coach. I think I am going to really enjoy playing for Coach Kehoe."
What will Aubrey bring to the table next year for Ole Miss and what will he have to work on the most to get himself ready?
"First of all, my forte is pass blocking. But what I have to work on the most is my run blocking. Don't get me wrong, I am good at that too, but not like I am at pass blocking."
And lastly, just why did Aubrey decide to become a Rebel after signing with FSU out of high school?
"I went up there for their Spring game. They had a nice campus and environment. Their coaches seemed real friendly and they know their football. I do not know. I just like Ole Miss. I heard a lot of good things from some people about Ole Miss too. They have a couple of guys from Jacksonville on their team, and they said a lot of good things about them. I like their new indoor center too. I just feel real comfortable up there. It just feels like home."
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