Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Ole Miss 89 South Alabama 71
I was mighty worried before tonight's game against South Alabama. I didn't know how the team would respond against a good team after learning earlier in the day that they would be without one of their top players for the rest of the season. Kudos to AK for having the team ready to play tonight after a poor showing in the opener and another shot of bad injury news. The most remarkable thing about tonight's game is our perfect 22-22 free throw shooting. I know that is an Ole Miss record, and I wouldn't be surprised if it is an SEC record. Hopefully our good fortunes from the line will continue. These eyes have had to endure a number of very poor free throw shooting teams. Zach Graham played well in Eniel's absence. He played tough defense and scored 16 points, including several three's. David Huertas led the way again with 27 points. David hit 7 three's which is one off of Keith Carter's school record of 8. I'll be surprised if he doesn't break that record before the season is over. Chris Warren is still struggling to find his shot, but he played much better tonight than he did in the opener. He was able to get the lane and finish and did a better job of running the offense tonight. Chris finished with 15 points. The newcomers had a better showing tonight. I thought that DeAndre Cranston played well, finishing with 9 points and 5 rebounds. Henry (8), White (6), and Holloway (6) looked more comfortable and confident than they did in the opener. Mac White continues to be tough on defense and on the boards, but we need more consistent offensive production from him if we are going to be successful. Very good win for the Rebels tonight. South Alabama is not quite the team they were last year, but it's still a quality win. I'm encouraged by the play of Zach Graham and was glad to see improved play from the newcomers tonight. Everybody needs to get ready for a bumpy ride this preseason. We will struggle at times, but I expect us to be a pretty good team by the time SEC play rolls around. The Rebs are back in action on Friday when they play Utah in the Glenn Wilkes Classic in Daytona Beach, Florida. They then have an off day Saturday before playing Marshall on Sunday. Two more good tests for this young team.