Kennedy meets with Reb team

Rebel hoops Coach Andy Kennedy met with the current Rebel team for roughly 45 minutes this morning. The following are comments from Kennedy and some Rebel players.

Andy Kennedy met with his new team this morning for 45 minutes and left a "good impression" on the players we were able to corner.

"The meeting went fine," said Kennedy. "I just wanted them to be able to put a face to the name and give them some background. I'm a Mississippi native who grew up 90 miles from here and I understand what they are feeling. I've been through what they are going through on both sides of the fense - I've been through it as a player and as a coach on a staff that has been dismissed.

"I've had to pick up the pieces before myself and know they are apprehensive about what is happening."

Kennedy told the team that this is their team, not his.

"This is their team. We can all talk about what we want to do, but until you put it in action, it falls on def ears. We didn't go into too many particulars today. I jsut told them I was here to serve them," he continued. "I told them I am here to make them successful on and off the court. That is my charge and tha is what I intend to do."

Senior Bam Doyne got a good first impression of Kennedy.

"I'm excited. Coach Kennedy seems to know what he is doing," said Doyne. "He will meet with us one-on-one and we will go from there. There is a lot to do. He made a good first impression on me."

Sophomre Trey Hampton was also pleased with the meeting.

"I had a previous relationship with Coach Kennedy. He recruited me out of high school. He's cool with me," said Hampton. "He told us he wants whoever wants to stay here to be here and then go from there. I'm definitely thinking about staying."

Junior Brian Smith was optimistic about the future of Ole Miss basketball under Kennedy's guidance.

"He seems like he's going to be a player's coach. He said he will give us the opportunity to play our game," said Smith. "He said this was our team, not his, and we would be accountable for what we do. He seemed real cool to me.

"This gives us a sense of relief. We at least knkow who our coach is going to be. We've been in limbo for a long time and have heard a lot of rumors. I think it will be a great opportunity for him and us."

None of the players commented on the "staying or leaving" issue, but most were upbeat about the future with Kennedy at the helm.

More later.

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