Patrick Trahan, the 6-3, 230-pound Rebel LB who worked all summer on his academics just to get to Ole Miss, has been around this block before.
Trahan's first rodeo was in 2005 at Auburn when he was a wide-eyed freshman who ended up redshirting.
Since then, he logged time playing in all 13 games as a RS frosh at Auburn and then playing a year at Northwest CC where he earned 2nd Team All-American status.
Now, a new chapter in his football life has opened and Patrick feels he's ready for it having earned a second chance to show his skills in the SEC at Ole Miss.
"I know I have a lot of work to do, but I am very happy to be here," said the New Orleans, LA, native. "I feel we have a great team and I just want to do whatever I can to help us win.
"I just want to be a part of it. I can't tell you how thankful I am to be here and to be getting this chance."
Trahan had a tough row to hoe just to become a Rebel.
"It was an uphill battle academically and a lot of people gave up on me, but my Mom, Coach (Houston) Nutt and my brother stuck with me," Patrick continued. "We just worked hard and got it done. When I was down or feeling like it would never happen, I called on those three to pick me up and they never let me down."
Trahan arrives at Ole Miss with a lot of fans thinking he has a big "S" emblazoned on his chest. He understands the scrutiny he is under, but he's not going to let that bother him one way or the other.
"My team will get my best, whatever that is," he said thoughtfully. "I'm just going to do whatever the coaches tell me to do, get myself in shape and handle my business. Hopefully that will be good enough to help get me on the field and help the team."
Patrick says his strength as a linebacker is diagnosing his weaknesses and improving them.
"I'm always analyzing my game and trying to work on what I do poorly. I am good at disguising my weaknesses and playing to my strengths," he noted. "I try to use my speed and aggressiveness as much as possible. Speed can make up for a lot of mistakes, but if you are going to be a good linebacker you can't make a lot of mistakes."
Patrick said his reception on the team has been excellent.
"I knew a couple of the guys before I got here, but everyone has treated me like family. One heartbeat is our motto for the season and it's real around here. Everyone is for everyone," Trahan added. "We are going to stick together and create a shield that nobody can penetrate."
Patrick said he's not condition yet that he needs to be in, but it was unavoidable.
"My books had to come first and I can't tell you how much time I spent trying to get eligible. I was constantly studying and just did not have time to get in great shape, the kind of shape you have to be in for an SEC fall camp," Patrick stated. "I had to do so much reading, research and writing with the English classes I had to take, but I wasn't going to give up."
Redemption can be a sweet emotion. Just ask Patrick.
"It was very hard on me to lose the first opportunity I had to play in the SEC. I knew I wanted it back and I knew I wanted it to be at Ole Miss," he closed. "I had no alternative but to make it.
"Now that I am here, I feel like a new man. I won't make the same mistakes I made before and I will be the best I can be for my family, for my team and for Ole Miss."
Patrick Trahan update -
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