Sowell looking to get into the rotation

Bradley Sowell arrived at Ole Miss for his official visit in December at 6' 8 3/4" and a whopping 368 pounds, but after hiring a weight trainer and sticking to it for the past eight months, Sowell has shaved off 60 pounds.

This new conditioning has really caught the eye of the Ole Miss staff as Sowell could be in the rotation this Fall.

"I am like night and day better now than I was in high school," added the always colorful Bradley Sowell. "If I would have arrived here at 368 like I was in high school, I would not even be able to complete the practices. I would not have been able to take it. But now, I have that second wind. I have been here all summer working my tail off so I can play this year. I got in shape and got my legs up from under me. I am right at 305 pounds right now. I can move around and stuff, and I can dig deep during these hot practices. That was the best decision I ever made in my life, to lose all of that weight."

What has been the biggest transition for Bradley since he arrived to Ole Miss?

"The speed of the game is the biggest thing, and just being out there and learning the plays. There is no period where they just sit down and teach you the plays, you have to learn it on your own. You have to pick it up really/really quick or you will be left behind. I guess the speed of the game and there is just so much more stuff you have to know here. There is so much stuff that I did not know about the game of football. In high school, you get by on your natural ability, but here, there are a lot of iffs and whats. If somebody goes here, or if somebody goes there, what do you do next? It can get overwhelming at times. You just have to adapt in a hurry."

Sowell was able to spend the entire summer at Ole Miss for the voluntary workouts. Did this help him get a leg up on the competition?

"That is what has gotten me through camp so far. When I got out there, I knew how to be behind the line. I knew what was going to be required of us, as opposed to some of the guys who have not been here. They did not know what it was going to take, but me being here this summer, it gave me just a little edge, just a little edge about being in shape and learning the plays and stuff like that."

Coach Art Kehoe has taken a liking to Bradley's ability and personality, in return, he has really stayed on top of the Hernando product. Did this make Bradley feel like he was being picked on at times?

"At first, I kind of got dejected. I have never had a coach that was actually there with me for every second of the day. But after a while, I just shook it off, picked it up and tried to get it right the next time. We watch film pretty much everyday in the film room. He shows us how to get better each day. At first, I kind of got my feelings hurt, but I just learned that he is just being Coach Kehoe. That is why he is one of the best in the business."

Does Bradley look at it that if a coach is riding his back the whole day, that maybe they see something in his game?

"Yea, he gets on us a lot, like today me and Rishaw were tired today. He looked at us straight in the eye and told us to find it in us to keep pushing because if the season started tomorrow, we would be in the game against Memphis. The little stuff like that lets us know that he really likes us and our work habit. Even though he keeps following me and Rishaw a lot, we know why. That kind of rejuvenated us and gives me and Rishaw some extra motivation to keep pushing ourselves."

Is Bradley surprised that he might be in for some playing time as a true freshman?

"I mean, a little bit, but I knew we were going to be short at the OL when I signed. If anybody goes down, we are already second team. It just makes you grow up a little bit faster than if you are going to take a redshirt, but I would not have it any other way. I expected to come in here and play right away. A lot of people outside our program did not have a lot of faith in me coming out of high school, but I knew what I had and I knew our coaches did too. That is why I am here."

The defensive line that Ole Miss has gathered could be something special; does Bradley feel the same?

"I know they are going to be special. There is no question about that. And they are only making us better, as a unit. I am facing defensive ends like Kentrell Lockett who are running second team, well, we all know Kentrell is not your normal second teamer. He would be a star on just about anybody's line around the country. To be honest, our second team is just as good as the first team. There is no drop off. It makes you work so hard, because if you do not bring your A game, you are going to get embarrassed."

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