Practice report, Thursday

The Rebels wrapped up their full-speed preparations for Saturday's game with Vanderbilt today in the Indoor Pratice Facility as rain rolled into the Oxford area. Read Coach Ed Orgeron's comments about the day and the week inside.

Q: Do you feel like Earl Bennett is one of the better wideouts you'll face this year?

Coach O: He's a real good player. He had 10 receptions against us last year and sometimes we were doubling him. He has 17 catches this year and next on their team is three receptions by an individual. They just know how to get him the ball. Their coaches do a good job of gameplanning and getting him open. Earl is all over the place.

Q: What are your thoughts on their run game?

Coach O: We went up there two years ago and #22 (Cassen Jackson-Garrison) had over 100 yards on us. You cannot discount their run game, no way. We have to stop the run first.

Q: Their OL is experienced. . . .

Coach O: They have five guys coming back and they understand their system. They do what they are supposed to do.

Q: What are your thoughts on your running game after Missouri and a week of practice?

Coach O: We improved a lot last week and we need to keep that going. We have to run the football. Last year against them we didn't have but 129 yards and were 1-12 on third downs. They shut us down. They gameplanned us well, they do a lot of things and we have to be well-prepared. I think we are - we have certainly worked hard enough.

Q: How important is it to get something going early on offense?

Coach O: We have to because we are not that good on defense yet. We are not a dominating defense right now - we have some holes, so we have to produce on offense and score points. That's obvious.

Q; Do you think you have your LB situation cleaned up?

Coach O: We are still working on it. We still have some guys out of position and we have a couple of guys nicked up, so we aren't solid there yet, but it's still 48 hours to kickoff and we are still correcting some things and working and healing.

Q: You mentioned earlier in the week that frosh DTs Lawon Scott and Ted Laurent were getting closer to being ready for some more playing time. You stioll feel that way?

Coach O: Yes. They had a great week of practice. Lawon was dominating yesterday in practice. We have moved them up from the black jersey (scout team) and we are going to see if we can play them now. They are understanding the system and are in better shape now. The weight of two-a-days is off them now. Every freshman is different. Some hit the wall and some fight through it. Overall, our freshmen have had a great attitude and there are still a lot of opportunities for some of them.

Q: Does their advancement and and possibility of opporunities their first year have anything to do with getting them here in early summer as opposed to August?

Coach O: Yes. They are in better condition and they don't get homesick as much - they are already over that.

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