Miscues and missed opportunities, the two things that have consistently hurt the Ole Miss Rebels at the most critical times this season, proved to be their undoing again in a 38-24 loss to No. 21 Arkansas Saturday at Reynolds Razorback Field.
Despite falling behind 21-0 in the first half, the Rebels (3-4 overall, 1-3 in the Southeastern Conference) had a real opportunity to earn a rare road win late in a game that lasted over five hours due to two weather delays.
Two touchdown passes from Ole Miss quarterback Jeremiah Masoli, who accounted for over 400 total yards, to Markeith Summers in the fourth quarter pulled the Rebels to within one touchdown (31-24) of the Razorbacks (5-2, 2-2) with just over nine minutes left in the game. (October 25, 2010, Page 1B)
The second half of the season begins Saturday with a pivotal game for the Ole Miss Rebels and No. 21 Arkansas Razorbacks. Since Houston Nutt came to Oxford to coach the Rebels, the Arkansas game has been circled on the calendar for both fan bases.
Nutt has routinely tried to downplay his personal involvement in the game, but the fact remains that his Rebels have used wins over the Razorbacks the last two years as launching pads to successful seasons that ultimately ended with wins in back-to-back Cotton Bowls.
Ole Miss (3-3 overall, 1-2 in the Southeastern Conference) may be the underdog in Saturday’s game at Reynolds Razorback Stadium, but there is still a glimmer of hope that a third-straight win over Arkansas (4-2, 1-2) would go a long way to turning around a season that got off to a start Nutt didn’t anticipate. (October 22, 2010, Page 6A)
During Monday’s regularly scheduled press conference at the Indoor Practice Facility, Nutt brushed off a question regarding his trip back to Arkansas, where he coached for 10 seasons.
Asked if he felt there were still emotions surrounding his pending trip back to Fayetteville, Ark., Nutt said: “I think it has died down a little bit. I am sure there is a few people that still want to see Houston Nutt beat. The thing I am more concerned about is being focused on the task at hand. (October 19, 2010, Page 8)
If the Arkansas Razorbacks are going to make a run at winning the Southeastern Conference Western Division title, then quarterback Ryan Mallett is going to have to be 100 percent healthy.
Mallett missed all of the spring due a broken foot and while he appears to have recovered from the injury, he’s also been limited at times during the first two weeks of summer drills. Mallett shined in Arkansas’ Thursday scrimmage throwing for 475 yards and five touchdowns, while in the team’s most recent scrimmage held Saturday, Mallett threw touchdown passes to tight end D.J. Williams and wideout Joe Adams. The belief from many is he’s healthy enough to help lead the Razorbacks to the SEC title game for the first time since the 2006 season. From wide receiver Greg Childs’ standpoint, Mallett is throwing the ball like he has in the past. (August 24, 2010, Page 6)
Arkansas quarterback Ryan Mallett could have avoided the Southeastern Conference’s annual Media Days event if he wanted to. The 6-foot-6, 238-pound Texarkana, Ark., native could be getting ready to take part in an NFL training camp instead of taking questions from a room full of reporters like he did on Thursday.
While the lure of playing in the NFL might have been attractive for a time after the 2009 season ended for Mallett, he ultimately felt like coming back to help the Razorbacks was the right choice for him personally, and the entire program.
Mallett’s return to Arkansas not only helps solidify Bobby Petrino’s tenure at the school, it has elevated the Razorbacks in the pecking order of schools that could win the SEC West title this year, a fact that seems to be the most pleasing to Mallett. (July 23, 2010, Page 6A)
OLE MISS FOOTBALL — Ole Miss junior quarterback Jevan Snead has opted to forgo his senior season and enter the NFL Draft. As a junior, Snead passed for 2,762 yards and 26 touchdowns with a FBS-high 20 interceptions. Remaining QBs on the roster include redshirt freshman Nathan Stanley and freshmen Raymond Cotton and Clayton Moore. (January 8, 2010, Page 8A)