Ole Miss Football: Grove Grinder, Don’t Worry, Hang Tough Rebel Nation

AUBURN, AL - OCTOBER 07: Head coach Matt Luke of the Mississippi Rebels looks on during the game against the Auburn Tigers at Jordan Hare Stadium on October 7, 2017 in Auburn, Alabama. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
AUBURN, AL - OCTOBER 07: Head coach Matt Luke of the Mississippi Rebels looks on during the game against the Auburn Tigers at Jordan Hare Stadium on October 7, 2017 in Auburn, Alabama. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /

Its just over 24 hours away from the kickoff of the 2018 edition of Ole Miss football when they face Texas Tech and some Rebels are worried.

Well Rebel Nation, we are close now. We are now just over 24 hours away from Ole Miss football and the fun will begin. Well, we hope it will be fun. At any rate as the last 24 hours of the Rebels preseason tick away we still have to wait and some of us are still worried. I know there are some Rebels fans who have become stuck in the WAOM mode. They have the idea this is just going to be like every other year for Ole Miss football. There are Rebels fans who don’t want to get their hopes up for a great season because they feel the Rebels will fall short. And I get it.

Over the past couple of seasons we have seen our share of bad luck when it has come to the Ole Miss football program. Between the four-year NCAA colonoscopy and then the Hugh Freeze scandal there has been a lot of wind taken out of some Rebels sails. The state of affairs has indeed been pretty bad and many of us have gotten where we simply expect the worst and hope something good really happens instead. So far this preseason I have been more than a little surprised by some of the negativity towards this Ole Miss football team.

Being A Rebel Sure Is Tough

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Nobody ever said being a Ole Miss fan would be easy. There have been times in the somewhat distant past where the Ole Miss football program was in far worse shape than it is now. I realize some of you may not be old enough to remember those days but trust me, some of us older Rebels are still way too young to be able to forget. Oh there have been some really bad years for Ole Miss football.

Lets begin with  Steve Sloan who was in Oxford from 1978 thru 1982. Sloan won just 20 games in his 5 seasons. Then there is Ed Orgeron who won just 10 games in his 3 seasons as Rebels head coach. And I know you are old enough to remember Houston Nutt who, after having 2 nine-win seasons in his first two seasons, won 6 wins in his last two seasons. Nutt’s last season the Rebels went 2-10, a season to forget. Of course, remember Nutt also recently sued the University of Mississippi which has been settled.

It’s Really Not That Bad

Hopefully you can look back and also see where I’m coming from here. Yes, what we have been thru recently has been pretty bad. However, I believe as a whole the Ole Miss football program is in really good shape. The NCAA has done its bidding which turned out to be a glorified slap on the wrist. Matt Luke has proven himself by taking over a program which was turned upside down just before the 2017 season and by coaching them to a six-win season. Luke and the Rebels also beat a stout No.14 ranked Miss State team in the Egg Bowl. After that we watched as Luke and his staff closed out a No.30 ranked recruiting class.

Sure the Rebels still have a long way to go but as a whole Rebel Nation should be expecting this Ole Miss football team to be better in 2018, not worse. The 2018 edition of Ole Miss football is going to be exciting. The Rebels have two Preseason First Team All-Americans in wide receiver AJ Brown and offensive tackle Greg Little. When you look at the rest of the weapons Ole Miss has on the offensive side of the ball along with one of the most experienced offensive lines in the country then you have to like our chances.

Related Story. Burning Questions.... light

Yes there are questions we have about the defense. We have all wanted to see the return of the Landshark Defense in recent seasons. Will they be back this season? After watching the Rebels thru fall camp and looking at the Ole Miss two-deep depth chart I believe there is not just a good chance but a high probability we will see it emerge from the depths at some point.

Hopefully, despite losing some great players from 2017 this personnel group is very talented. As a whole the only real question I have on the defensive side of the ball is with the linebackers and it isn’t a talent issue but rather a depth issue. However, if they stay healthy they will be ok. Everybody should believe if this team is better in 2018, and I believe they will be, then we should easily have more than six wins this season. This is a good Ole Miss football team.

Don’t Worry Be Happy

Here at Ole Hotty Toddy we like to try to be positive about the Rebels sports programs and their ups and downs. I realize it is really easy to look at where the Ole Miss program is and think the sky is falling but it really isn’t. Instead of thinking the sky is falling we should be thinking the sky is the limit for coach Matt Luke and this Rebels team. They may have a long way to go and  a lot to prove but the Rebels are on their way.

The Ole Miss program has been down before and always found its way back up and it will again. I really like to think it will be sooner rather than later we’ll be back in the rankings and all will be right again in the college football world. I really like to believe it will even happen this season. Of course, only time will tell but thankfully we don’t have to wait much longer.

Next. Season Predictions!. dark

So as we head into the 2018 Ole Miss season please just have a little less worry about these Rebels. This is a very talented and experienced team and will have a great season. Will there be growing pains for some younger players? Of course, there will be. Will there be some losses? Yes, there will be some losses. However, there will also be some great Rebels wins this season. Just hang in there Rebel Nation and the Ole Miss Rebels will prove it. Hotty Toddy!