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Previewing Ole Miss at South Carolina: Checking in on the Rebels' Defense

We're going to stick to discussion topics and an open thread again today, as I really don't have time for much else. Expect some Q & A action with Ole Miss bloggers and a general preview tomorrow and Thursday.

  • It sounds like star DE Greg Hardy will play, but he may not be full speed. As the Ole Miss faithful pointed out to me in another thread, though, the Rebels will have a powerful pass rush even without Hardy at full go. The strength of this team's defense is its front line, and it will take the game of our offensive line's life to hold these guys in check. The question, I think, will be how well Garcia mans the pocket. If Garcia is smart and chooses the right times to run and the right times to stand his ground, he could have a great game both with his arm and his legs, as he did against Georgia.
  • I'm also interested to see how Garcia handles the blitz against Ole Miss. After watching Jarvis Giles explode last week, I'm ready to see Garcia audible against a blitz and flips it over to Giles in space to see what our young tailback can do.
  • All of the Rebels starting defensive backs measure under six feet. Tori Gurley and Weslye Saunders are both around 6'6, and Jason Barnes and Alshon Jeffery aren't far behind. Is this the week when we finally see Spurrier and Garcia exploit the size in our receiving corps and throw a few successful jump balls towards the endzone?
  • As we all know, Ty Nix is the Rebels' defensive coordinator. Spurrier showed that he knows how to carve up a Nix defense last year, and with an offense that generally looks more versatile this year, will Spurrier again exploit his familiarity of Nix's scheme?