Ole Miss Football: Grove Grinder, Past Year In Review, Bye Broken Spirits

BATON ROUGE, LA - OCTOBER 22: Leonard Fournette
BATON ROUGE, LA - OCTOBER 22: Leonard Fournette /

Ole Miss football will always be about the people who are Ole Miss. The family. The die-hard Rebels who never give up and always bleed red and blue.

I realize there have been a lot of broken spirits over the past 52 weeks when it comes to Ole Miss football. I dare say 52 weeks ago there was anybody, besides Rosey smh, who saw us in the shape we are in now as a football program. It’s a sad state of affairs for our program, players, fans and Ole Miss family.

A year ago I was getting ready for the 2016 season and had the highest of expectations. We were coming off an incredible thrill ride which was the 2015 season. Ole Miss finished with a 10-3 record; our only losses coming to Florida, Memphis and the 53-52 OT heart breaker with the Hogs. Of course, the tenth win came in the 48-20 rout of OK State in the Sugar Bowl. We had a whole lot to look forward to.

We had a proven SEC quarterback in Chad Kelly coming back for his senior season. We had a proven running back Jordan Wilkins coming back for his senior season. We had Evan Engram coming back as well. The stars seemed aligned and then it began about this time a year ago.

First, Jordan Wilkins was ruled academically ineligible for the season due to an academic adviser’s error. Then the season opener came along and we saw our best defensive back go down early, once again out for the season. Of course, we blew a huge lead against FSU in that game. A few weeks later we blew a huge lead against Bama. Then Chad Kelly went down, out for the season.

It’s Only Gotten Worse

Ole Miss Rebels Football
Ole Miss Rebels Football /

Ole Miss Rebels Football

After a very sad 2016 season which ended in a 5-7 record and just about an entire staff change, it’s only gotten worse. Of course, an NCAA investigation finally culminated into a hostage video by Vitter and Bjork and a three-ring NCAA fiasco.

Enter Houston Nutt with his defamation suit and phone records of former head coach Hugh Freeze. Of course, Steve Robertson jumped at the chance to dig thru a head coaches private life and it ultimately resulted in the former coach being forced to resign.

That in turn resulted in the promotion of Matt Luke to interim head coach and what some believe to be a no-win situation for him. Of course, with Matt Luke we get die-hard Ole Miss tradition and family.

Personally, I believe Matt Luke will do a great job this season and like many others, I’m somewhat relieved. Gone are much of the Freeze rumors and unnecessary innuendo. I get it, it could be so much better right now for Ole Miss football, however it could be much worse. There is a quick fix and it could save Ole Miss football.

The Solution Is Football

It’s amazing when the root of the entire problem turns out to be the solution. Throughout this whole ordeal this team has stood together. They have weathered question after question and the firestorm of negative media against Ole Miss football.

These young men aren’t stupid, they realize the talent on this team just as they do the situation at hand. For now, they are just ready to play ball and that should be all of our attitudes for this 2017 season. So far, I haven’t seen one single broken spirit on this team. This team has pushed beyond everything which is negative and have stayed strong together. They also know this team is really good.

Next: Our Rivals Still Fear Us!

As part of the Ole Miss family, though some of our spirits may be broken, football will make it better. Although we may be facing even more adversity, this is the time to stand behind these young men as they sacrifice for us. So cheer up, your Rebels will be playing soon. Of course, put on your red and blue and oh yeah, get your best ‘FIN’ ready; this season is going to be special. We Are Ole Miss!