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EDITOR’S NOTE: Cody Prewitt is a former All American safety for Ole Miss. His intensity, ferocity and talent are well-remembered and always missed. We are so grateful to Cody for sharing his time and insights.
First, I want to take a second to recognize Col. Chris Scott. I have been fortunate to develop a close relationship with him and his family; his son Charlie Scott was one of the first friends I made at Ole Miss my freshman year.
After halftime, I was blessed to join his family out on the field as everyone recognized all the sacrifices he made, as well as those made by all of our Armed Forces personnel who risk their lives time and time again so that we can all enjoy beautiful Saturdays in a stadium full of one big family, the Rebel Nation family.
Secondly, I want to recognize SFC Anthony Davis, UM Army ROTC, as it was his efforts that afforded us an opportunity to show our active and retired military servicemen and women just how appreciated they are. The beautiful display of support for our U.S. Armed Forces from the crowd Saturday is why I love Ole Miss and my Ole Miss family. So, again, thank you to everyone who has risked and those who continue to risk risk their lives to protect our country and liberty.
I am not sure if I remember the last time we had an atmosphere that electric inside the Vaught (since I’ve left campus, at least), so thank you Rebel Nation for filling the Vaught to the brim and giving this team a taste of the electric atmosphere I also got to experience during my time as a Rebel.
LSU was facing 65,000+ Saturday, not just 120 guys, and they felt it, I promise.
The defense is really starting to find its identity after a slow start and some frustrating initial productivity from LSU’s offense. We bent as much as we could, but refused to break. That refusal to break came in the form of a 4th-down stand that, from my perspective, was the catalyst for what resulted in a very solid defensive performance — a defensive performance that held an LSU team that put up 40+ points on an explosive and talented Florida team the week before.
Of course I won’t be able to talk football without mentioning leadership; Chance Campbell impresses me every time he steps on the field with his effort, physicality, and most importantly, his efficiency.
I can’t express just how valuable it is to have a leader on the field who consistently plays at a high level. That kind of consistency will inevitably become infectious, and it is starting to manifest itself, which is exactly what’s happened the last few weeks as we’ve seen Mark Robinson, Cedric Johnson, and Sam Williams, Sr. (and the entire defense, really. These are just a few of the guys who I have noticed really establishing their presence on the field) playing with a sense of urgency indicative of a defense that has a desire to get better, be dominant, and ultimately just win games.
— Ole Miss Football (@OleMissFB) October 27, 2021
I’m sure there aren’t many people who would have guessed prior to the season that we’d be holding LSU to just 77 rushing yards.
Given the state of the defense last year, it is truly a testament of the amount of hard work these guys have put in thus far, and seeing progress almost weekly, I believe it’s safe to reiterate that while this defense may not yet be on par with some of the past defenses that brought so much joy and success to Ole Miss and us as fans, they are absolutely on the right track, and I can’t wait to watch them reach their potential!
On the offensive side of the ball, it’s fair to say they started slow, as well, but given that we have so many injuries right now, I would argue that (penalties aside) we more than stepped up to the plate.
Speaking of plates, I would love to see John Rhys Plumlee get the ball not just more, but often; he’s arguably one of the most athletic guys on the field, no matter who we are playing. I’m sure Kiffin’s staff has its reasons. I’m not at practice every week and don’t see everything behind the scenes, so this is just a personal opinion from having watched him in person and thinking, “Yes, I’m glad I never had to guard this guy!” But, yes, he’s crazy athletic, and if coach does see this for whatever reason, get JRP the ball!
That being said, I am not surprised at all at the success we did have against LSU. I know last week there were a lot of ‘rumors’ going around about Matty being injured and listed as questionable to play. As I said last week, the kid would have to be strapped to a tree to keep him from leading his team. I could tell he wasn’t moving as freely as usual at the beginning of the game, so it was obvious he was/is dealing with something physical, and maybe this contributed a little to the offense starting slow.
Regardless, Matty’s leadership shined through again as he had the mental fortitude to put his body on the line, knowing how important his role is on this team. The key word being “team,” because everyone around Matty knew it was time to step up and they did, particularly the RB’s.
Henry Parrish, Snoop Conner, and Jerrion Ealy, all of them in my opinion, showed just how capable this offense is despite our wide receiver room being so light due to injuries. It was awesome seeing Jerrion back playing healthy, or close to being healthy at the least, as we all know what he’s capable of at 100%.
JERRION IS BACK FOLKS pic.twitter.com/lmh14uOgyx
— Ole Miss Football (@OleMissFB) October 23, 2021
Snoop, well, there’s nothing I can say about Snoop that everyone isn’t already aware of. The kid is an animal. Parrish, he’s proven himself to be a workhorse.
The different play styles of these three guys complement each other so well and also are so different that it makes containing all three of them a daunting task for any defense.
I think we are 3rd in rushing in the country right now, so the numbers speak for themselves, there. If we can somehow get everyone healthy, our potential has no ceiling.
I would love to get our WR’s back healthy so Matty could go ahead and put this Heisman “discussion” to rest completely, but even with an injury-plagued offense, he continues to show how special of a talent he is. I’m genuinely proud of the effort he has put in during the off-season to establish himself as one of the elite QB’s in the country and the role his leadership has played in pushing this team back into a position to do great things.
He can do it all. pic.twitter.com/BZRX4Nfbfz
— Ole Miss Football (@OleMissFB) October 23, 2021
Coming out of Sylva Bay Academy, a small private school in Bay Springs, Mississippi, Cody Prewitt was one of 10 players from the 2011 Ole Miss Football signing class who received high school All-America honors. In 2012, Prewitt started every game and finished second on the team with 80 tackles. He helped lead Ole Miss to a 7-6 record and a bowl win over Pittsburgh.
In 2013, Cody played in every game with 11 starts and led the SEC and tied for seventh nationally with six interceptions and finished second on the team with 71 tackles, 13 passes defended, four tackles-for-loss, and two forced fumbles. For his play, he became the 55th first team All-America selection in school history and helped lead Ole Miss to an 8-5 record and a bowl win over Georgia Tech. Cody was named a first-team All-American by both the Associated Press and USA Today. He was named named to the All-SEC first team by the AP, ESPN.com, Sporting News, College Sports Madness, and by the SEC coaches.
In 2014, Cody continued his decorated career at Ole Miss. He became the first player to return to Ole Miss as a first team All-American since Patrick Willis did so in 2006. He played in 13 games in 2014, finishing with 64 tackles on the season, 44 of which were solo. He notched 3 INTs, and had a fumble return for a touchdown against A&M.
In 2014, Cody was named All-America second team (AP, SI.com, CBS Sports, Scout.com, Athlon) • All-SEC first team (consensus) • Jim Thorpe Award Semifinalist (2013 and 2014) • Midseason All-America and All-SEC • Preseason All-America and All-SEC • Week 7 National Defensive Player of the Week (after a 75-yard interception return for a touchdown at Texas A&M) • Helped Ole Miss rank top 15 nationally in total defense (321.2 ypg), opponent 3rd down conversion (31.1) and red zone defense (71.9)