Some take-aways from the Friday listening session after a full week of Ole Miss camp ...
There are interviews, and then there’s what I refer to as the “listening session” when I go back and transcribe.
Sometimes you hear something during the live interview, a bell goes off, and you run with it then, or you make a mental note to check that on the recording.
Sometimes, though, there’s a constant drum beat of everything is wonderful, everybody’s bigger, faster and stronger, and that can dull your senses.
So things can sound different in the listening session.
Here are a few take-aways after transcribing Friday’s interviews.
Sophomore linebacker Jacquez Jones:
“Last year playing as a freshman I was really just out there running around. This year I actually know what I’m doing, the gaps to read. It’s just a whole different person.”
A couple of things here.
One, a young player may be exaggerating a bit.
However, if he was confused enough by the scheme he was asked to play that this kind of statement is even on his radar, that’s concerning.
Yes, it’s a bold new world for freshmen in August, but it shouldn’t be in October, and it should be even less so in November.
By late November a freshman who appeared in all 12 games, a guy who made freshman All-SEC, should feel so different that he can barely remember August.
If you take that statement at face value it reflects poorly on the coaching Jones received last year.
If he was indeed as confused as that statement makes it sound he probably wouldn’t have been as productive.
I’m thinking there’s some exaggeration.
As I told my kids when they were growing up, “The truth is in the middle.”
More from Jones on teammates Lakia Henry, a first-year junior college transfer, and junior Donte Evans, who appeared in seven games last year after appearing in 11 as a true freshman. This requires far less probing analysis.
“Lakia, he’s a hitter. He’s new so he don’t know really the scheme right now, he’s still trying to get that, but he’ll come down and hit you. He’s getting better every day. Where he started and where he’s at now, he’s come up.
“Donte … From Donte last year and this year there’s been a whole change. His level of physicality has been through the roof. He’s one of the most physical guys in the room. That’s what allows him to play with the ones.”
Senior DL Austrian Robinson, the Chucky Mullins Award winner:
We asked Austrian about the progress of the offensive line.
“Really, I like them. They’re way better than I thought they were going to be.”
Senior DB Myles Hartsfield:
We asked Myles about the young wide receivers.
“One freshman that’s sticking out to me that reminds me of AJ (Brown) would be (Jonathan) Mingo. At the top of the route he’s strong, physical. When he gets his hands on the ball it’s hard to rip it away from him. I would say that group is coming along. I wouldn’t have any worries right there.”