Adversity is nothing new for this Ole Miss football team.
Saturday’s loss to Arkansas was devastating, to say the least, because of what was at stake. The Rebels saw their playoff chances dashed and their SEC championship odds take a hit in a rather unorthodox fashion.
That’s all in the past now and Ole Miss is ready to move forward.
“This team has been through a lot of adversity, every player on the team,” Laquon Treadwell, junior wide receiver, said. “It’s something that we’ve gotten used to and it will help us in the long run.”
Ole Miss been through situations like this one before. Losing to Auburn last year put this them in a similar spot and they are ready to respond in a better way this year.
“That stuck around for a while and it lasted a little bit longer,” Evan Engram, junior tight end, said. “We are moving past this one better than I expected.”
Ole Miss had a team meeting on Sunday and Engram felt a more positive tone than the meeting after Auburn last year.
“We responded a lot better than I thought. The locker room Sunday, I was expecting a lot of down heads and a kind of low energy,” Engram said. “We came in with some good energy.”
Engram said the team had a good work out Sunday and a great practice today, and he isn’t the only one ready to get back to work.
“It’s time to work. This team has been through a lot the last two years,” Treadwell said. “A loss is a loss in this league. So you’ve got to move on and take the next step and get back to work.”
After a loss as devastating as the one last Saturday, it can often to be tough to play at the same level, but Treadwell doesn’t expect a let down.
“It won’t be tough at all. This team is built around playing with intensity and playing with passion,” Treadwell said. “We’ll go out and attack LSU just like we attack any other team and play to win, and if the chips fall our way, we’ll be appreciative of that.”
There is still plenty to play for this season. The Rebels need Alabama and Arkansas to lose this next week to control their own destiny in the SEC west again, and the hopes of a championship are not out of reach.
“I came here to do a job and win a championship,” Chad Kelly, junior quarterback, said. “And that is still in our goal range.”
Adversity has helped shape this team. They’ve been down before, but it hasn’t stopped them from getting back up.
“We’re gonna get knocked down, but how many times can you get up,” Engram preached. “That’s the kind of things coach Freeze and his staff teach us. Not just about football but in life.”