More quotes. . .

Yes, it's less than a week into fall football camp for the Ole Miss Rebels. Yes, there is plenty of work to do to mold this group of players into a good team. But, to this point, the Rebel players and coaches are upbeat and positive about the early results. Read some of their remarks inside.

The following are quotes from select Ole Miss players and coaches during yesterday's media opportunity.

* Senior SS B. Brown: "Things are going well. It's hot, but we are in good shape and getting a lot of work in. So far, everything is going the way we had hoped as far as making progress and improving. I'm where I want to be physically and mentally. I have recovered from my knee injury in spring and am actually ahead of schedule.". . . On the freshmen safeties Allen Walker and Jamal Harvey: "They are very athletic and are going to do a lot for this program in time. Once they learn the system, they will be pushing the veterans for playing time. They have a lot of talent, but they are jsut scratching the surface on learning what to do."

* Freshman OLB Jonathan Cornell: "It's been about what I expected so far. Everything is very intense, we're practicing hard and we're playing fast, which is what I thought college football would be. Right now, I'm just in the learning mode. I'm going full speed and doing everything the coaches ask me to do in order to get better and help the team when it's my turn. I'm trying to soak everything in, but we're getting a lot thrown at us right now.". . . On what he needs to improve: "I have to pay more attention to the little details of linebacking and I need to learn my assignments better. In college, there is a lot more technique in college, but it's not a foreign concept to me because I had good coaching in high school. I understand what the coaches are talking about, it's just a matter of applying it in practice within the scheme.". . . On his position: "I'm playing Sam LB right now and I feel comfortable there. Whatever is best for the team is best for me."

* Frosh WR Shay Hodge on his progress: "I feel I'm doing OK, but I'm still messing up some, which I guess is expected sometimes. I feel good so far.". . . On his adjustment to college: "Speed and strength is the biggest difference. Everyone here is big, strong and fast. I recognized that in the offseason when I reported here. I realized real quickly I'd have to improve my speed and strength. I improved those areas some in the summer, but I need more. I weigh 195 right now, but I'm looking for 200 and some more speed.". . . On playing wide receiver: "I'm catching the ball well and running my routes the way the coaches want me to, but I have to get caught up in recognizing coverages and knowing when to take an outside or inside release depending on the coverage.". . . On his route running: "I think that part of my game is doing well. The returning wide receivers worked hard with me in the summer during 7-on-7 to get my routes more precise and I think I caught on to that well.". . . On being a freshman: "I'm not intimidated by the surroundings. I like competition and want to push all the wide receivers to do better things, myself included."

* FB Jason Cook on his health after breaking his arm in spring: "I'm very healthy. I have had a lot of contact in shells and my arm has been hit a lot. I feel great about it - no pain, completely healed.". . . On the difference between this year and last year: "We are gelling more as a team. We like being around each other and that's a good thing because we are together most of the time. We have good comaraderie.". . . On freshman FB Reggie Hicks: "He's doing very well. I think all the running backs - young and old - are doing well. I'm excited about our group and I'm excited about the offense as a whole. Brent (Schaeffer) is making a difference, but the biggest thing is that we are gelling as a unit and we are making positive steps together, regardless of who's under center. The offensive line has come a long way since spring. Their growth has been expediential - they have worked so hard over the summer to get quicker and faster and stronger and it's showing up out there. You can see it."

CB Nate Banks on early results of camp: "Camp is going real well. I think the defense will be better this year because we all know our assignments and we are all on the same page. Everyone seems more comfortable this year and we are already having fewer busts in assignments, and that's a major key to our development." . . . On covering the young WRs. "They are very good athletes. Some of them have great speed and they can all catch the ball well. They are going to surprise a lot of people this fall. Dexter (McCluster) is very fast and quick and is hard to cover. So are some of the othes, but he's standing out right now as the most difficult of the newcomers to cover.". . . On Cassius Vaughn: "The first couple of days, he was kind of lost, but now he's starting to make plays. We have taken him under our wing and he's catching on very well now. He's a quick study. He's coming along."

TE Coach Hugh Freeze on senior Lawrence Lilly: "I've been very, very pleased with Lawrence. He's working hard and seems like a totally new player. It's still early, but we know one thing - we need Lawrence Lilly in a big way and to this point I have been very pleased with the way he's responding to everything.". . . On junior Robert Lane: "He's ready to go. Robert is a playmaker and is doing everything I expected he'd do. He's improved since spring.". . . On the rest of the TEs: "Robert Hough has gained some strength and a little weight and is working hard. He's a threat in the passing game. We moved Keith Houston to TE from WR and he's doing a good job too. We are using him the same way we do Robert Lane - moving him around a little bit. We also have two walkons who are doing a real good job for us. Wallace McLaurin and Andy Johnson. Wallace is Sidney's brother from Jackson and Andy is from ECS in Memphis. Both are doing a great job and are giving us some depth there. In camp, you can't have enough bodies because they are all on special teams and we are running different personnel groupings. They are helping us out a lot."

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