As BYU goes independent it means new teams on the schedule and places to play. True Blue Cougars wll bring you a weekly look at the coming opponent from their own perspective.
Charles Kano, senior writer for Truebluecougars.com, spoke with Ole Miss insiders Austin Miller, sports editor for the Daily Mississippian newspaper, and Jake Adams, senior writer for Theolemissblog.com sports blog. We asked them a series of questions to help Cougar fans get familiar with Ole Miss and its football team in anticipation of the season opener in Oxford, Miss., against BYU.
What is the buzz around campus and the community about the impending home opener?
Miller: Fans are reminded of the home opening 49-48 loss to Jacksonville State last year. They are hoping for a better showing this year against BYU.
Adams: Fans are cautiously optimistic coming into the home opener, especially given the bad showing in 2010. Ole Miss is an SEC team, so they should have the speed and size advantage over BYU.
What are Ole Miss fan expectations for the season? Miller: There is some excitement coming into the season based on the solid recruiting class. Ole Miss picked up Nickolas Brassell, a 6-foot, 175-pound, speedy wide receiver from Batesville, Miss., and Tobias Singleton, a 6-foot-2, 190-pound receiver from Madison, Miss.
Ole Miss also returns a very deep offensive line from last year under the leadership of 6-foot-7, 315-pound Bradley Sowell and 6-foot-6, 325-pound Bobby Massie.
Adams: I think most fans are expecting a 6-6 or 7-5 season. The biggest issue is the defense. Ole Miss has had a traditionally strong defense, but the 2011 team is thin at linebacker, and the secondary was just awful last year with little to no sign of improvement this year.