Three takeaways from Ole Miss’ first preseason scrimmage
OXFORD, Miss. — The Ole Miss football team held its first preseason scrimmage of the fall Saturday in Vaught-Hemingway. It was the first chance to look at the team in a full-speed, game situation, and here are three takeaways from the day.
Defensive line dominated
What really stood out to me was the havoc the Rebels’ defensive line created throughout the entirety of the scrimmage, particularly in the passing game.
Had they been allowed to hit the quarterbacks, the D-line would have notched several sacks on the day. They dominated the line of scrimmage, putting tons of pressure on the quarterbacks and forcing them to evade the pocket on many plays throughout the course of the day.
There was solid production throughout the unit, but the players who stood out the most to me were JJ Pegues, Tavius Robinson, and Isaiah Iton.
Pegues was a huge problem for the run and pass game throughout the course of the scrimmage, while Iton seemed to always be in the backfield disrupting the quarterback.
Robinson did very well against the run and his pass rushing ability really stood out today. Their play, along with several others on the defensive front, was a notable issue for the offensive line, and that was my biggest takeaway from the day.
Running backs look the part
This was the first full-speed action we’ve seen during fall camp to this point, and it was the first real look at what the running backs could do this fall.
They did not disappoint.
Zach Evans was tough to tackle and broke out a few carries for ten yards or more in the time that he played.
In his first series of action, true freshman Quinshon Judkins broke free for a 25-yard run that would later lead to a score, while Ulysses Bentley flashed his speed as well.
As a unit, the running backs looked great. Their success was especially impressive considering the problems the defensive line was causing during the scrimmage.
Although it is still preseason, from an early eye test the unit looks like an elite position group.
Lane Kiffin told media his choice for MVP — before the scrimmage ever began — was Kinkead Dent. Dent didn’t disappoint. He looked comfortable in the offense, throwing for two touchdowns, en route to a very solid day.
USC-transfer Jaxson Dart had a solid day as well. He also threw for two touchdowns and had few incompletions. He let his arm stretch out a few times and completed a couple of deep balls on nice throws. From a production standpoint, it might have been his best showing yet.
Luke Altmyer, who started the scrimmage, made some nice plays and was fine overall. He handled the defensive pressure and had a couple of good drives where he led the offense all the way down the field.
Dillon is from Yazoo City, Ms. He is a senior journalism major pursuing a career in sportswriting. He grew up an Ole Miss fan and has always followed Ole Miss sports as well as the Dallas Cowboys and Atlanta Braves. He played football and basketball in high school and enjoys spending time with friends and family.