Notes and observations from Wednesday’s Ole Miss practice …
Viewable periods of practice were reduced from eight to six.
Offensive lineman Alex Givens (back) and Darius Thomas (heart condition) were walking around before practice, no pads.
Nothing’s changed on the injury front for either. Coaches are still hopeful Givens will have a role against Memphis, and there’s no word on a second evaluation for Thomas.
I did have someone tell me that Thomas (6-6, 340) would have had the longest arms in the NFL Combine this past season. It’s not hard to believe that. …
Freshman defensive end LeDarrius Cox is listed at 6-5, 300, and I really think they’ve short-changed him some pounds. He’s wearing a red No. 7 jersey with the defense, and it looks like they’ve handed him a medium.
Don’t know if Cox needs all that weight, but they like him enough to get him some second-team reps on a couple of special teams units right now. …
Jason Pellerin (concussion) was back with the tight ends. He was getting second-team reps while D’Vaughn Pennamon was getting third-team reps.
With Pennamon gone from the running backs freshman Jerrion Ealy was clearly the third back during the viewable periods. …
Defensively, safety Jon Haynes (hamstring) was back at practice in a green jersey. Brenden Williams, Montrell Custis, Luke Knox and Jalen Julius were also in green jerseys.
Outside linebacker Sam Williams, who was in green Monday after tweaking a knee in the scrimmage, was back full go and back in his first-team position.
The first-team defensive line again included Ryder Anderson, Benito Jones and Austrian Robinson with Tariqious Tisdale, KD Hill and Josiah Coatney on the second team.
Willie Hibbler was back at practice and was getting third-team reps. That looked odd. Hibbler was one of their better defensive players at the end of last year. …
The starting offensive line had a different twist today with Michael Howard, who had been running at right tackle in place of Givens, moving to left tackle.
Bryce Mathews moved from left tackle to right tackle.
Offensive coordinator Rich Rodriguez told us it was just a matter of keeping players versatile by playing other spots.
The interior remained the same with Royce Newman, Eli Johnson and Ben Brown from left to right. …
I didn’t see Tupelo freshman Jordan Jernigan among the receivers. He has been working with the second group. Rodriguez said Jernigan was "banged up."
The first-team receivers lined up with Miles Battle and Braylon Sanders wide and Elijah Moore in the slot.
The second team had Dontario Drummond and Demarcus Gregory wide with Tylan Knight in the slot.
Knight has also been working at the gunner on the punt team.
In one passing drill Gregory made a nice catch away from his body with lots of concentration on a ball thrown out in front.
Freshman Jadon Jackson followed with a similar catch, and WR coach Jacob Peeler shouted, “That’s the effort I want.”