Finally, after several delays, it’s game week. Sporting the new powder blue jerseys, Ole Miss hosts Florida to kickoff the SEC’s shortened season of 10 games on Saturday, Sept. 26.
Days before the first kickoff of the season, Ole Miss announced its official depth chart for the first and second string package of running backs, and it is filled with unexpected choices.
At RB1, the team revealed that either sophomore Jerrion Ealy or freshman Henry Parish Jr. will take the position. The entirety of the SEC is on notice because of Ealy’s explosive talent from last season. The Jackson Prep alum performed in all 12 games last season, racking up 722 yards off of 104 carries for six touchdowns. Expectations are high for Ealy as the back has continued to show improvement in both his ability and leadership, and there is no reason not to think Ealy could explode for a big season.
The surprise at the running back position comes at the second RB1 listed as the potential starter on Saturday: Parish Jr.. The true freshman out of Goulds, Florida, has the potential to catch opposing teams off guard this year, as he put together a statistically impressive career at Columbus High School. The lean 5’10”, 190-lb running back rushed for 4,653 yards in 4 years, averaging 9.3 yards per carry and almost 130 yards per game. Nearly half of those yards were in his senior year, where he put up 28 touchdowns for the season. Parish is poised to be a key component of the offense’s running attack this season.
The depth chart also revealed the RB2 position for Saturday as sophomore Snoop Conner or junior Tylan Knight. These familiar faces have both seen action on the field before the 2020 season. Connor played a crucial role in the offense last season, racking up 512 total yards for 5 touchdowns. His ability to punch the ball straight up the middle last season was pivotal for the team in short yardage situations. Knight only carried the ball seven times for 38 yards, but Knight and Connor are expected to play a more important role this season.
Whether it’s buck sweep to the right sideline, a pitch in the backfield or right up the middle, the running backs are ready to set the pace for an electric season on the ground.