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Predicting the 2014 SEC Football Season: Ole Miss Rebel Ackbar Black Bears

With less than 60 days until the college football season begins, it's never too early to look at the 2014 football schedules and make wild blind predictions.

John David Mercer-USA TODAY Spor

The first in a series leading up to fall camps, Ole Miss seems as a good a place to start as any.


Ole Miss Rebel Ackbar Black Bears 8-5 (3-5) in 2013

It's Year Three in the Hugh Freeze experiment. The Oxford faithful were absolutely giddy after the 2013 signing day but it hasn't quite translated to the playing field as of yet. Freeze went 7-6 in 2012 and 8-5 last season but it wasn't the quantum leap some expected. [Note that Houston Nutt went 9-4 and 9-4 before the wheels fell off the bus]. Do the fans expect more? Are they content with second tier SEC West success? 2014 is starting to shape up as a pivotal year for Freeze at Ole Miss.

The high points of 2013 had to be the rout at Texas and upset of LSU. The lowlights were the 25-0 drubbing the Crimson Tide gave them and losing to Mississippi State in the Egg Bowl.

The Rebs depend on a lot of young players to be their starters and leaders. We'll see if they have grown up enough.

Key Losses:
WR Donte Moncrief (NFL), WR Ja-Mes Logan, OL Austin Golson (transfer to Auburn), RB/KR Jeff Scott, RT Pierce Burton, C Evan Swindall, OG Jared Duke, LB Mike Marry, CB Charles Sawyer.

Key Returners:
DL Robert Nkemdiche, LB Denzel Nkemdiche, WR Laquon Treadwell, OL Laremy Tunsil, S Cody Prewitt, DB Antonio Conner, LB Serderius Bryant, CB Senquez Golson (arrested last week), QB Bo Wallace, RBs Jaylen Walton and I'Tavius Mathers.

DB C.J. Hampton, OG Roderick Taylor, CB Tee Shepard (juco), DE Garrald McDowell, WR Markell Pack.

The Schedule:
Aug. 28 (Thurs) vs. Boise State (Georgia Dome) - W - These Smurfs are not the same team that beat the UGA Power Rangers in 2011.
Sept. 6 at Vanderbilt (LP Field, Nashville) - W - Vandy has lost their mojo.
Sept. 13 vs. Louisiana-Lafayette - W - look for the up & coming Ragin' Cajuns to give the Rebs a little scare.
Sept. 20 open date
Sept. 27 vs. Memphis - W
Oct. 4 vs. Alabama - L
Oct. 11 at Texas A&M - L - This is practically a toss-up but home field advantage might decide it.
Oct. 14 vs. Tennessee - W
Oct. 25 at LSU - L - I can't see Les Miles' Tigers losing two in a reaux to the Ackbars.
Nov. 1 vs. Auburn - L
Nov. 8 vs. Presbyterian - W - The Blue Hose!
Nov. 15 open date
Nov. 22 at Arkansas - W
Nov. 29 vs. Mississippi State - W - Should be another classic but the home team probably gets the edge.

Let's go Bowling! Yes, but none of the big ones.

So there it is. Another 8-5. At least it is not 4-8 like Nutt went in year three.