Monday, August 15, 2022

Ole Miss Rebels Get Ready, Vandals Are Coming To Oxford Saturday

The route from Moscow, Idaho to Oxford, Mississippi
It’s a long blue (and red?) road to Moscow, Idaho.

Vandals from Moscow will be coming to Oxford in honor of homecoming weekend at Ole Miss. Not from Russia, of course, but from Idaho!

The Idaho Vandals (1-6), fresh off of a bye week, will face off against the Ole Miss Rebels (4-3) for the first time in the two teams’ history.  The Idahoans (yes, that’s what they’re called) seem ready for the road trip.

“There has been a lot of interest in attending this game, and I think it is a great opportunity for alums to experience the game day atmosphere at Ole Miss, specifically the Grove,” said Rob Spear, athletic director at the University of Idaho. “I am excited to see the atmosphere, and experience the atmosphere, and to take in some of the tradition.”

Many Vandal fans will be traveling down South to Mississippi for the first time. As they cheer on their team against the Rebels, at least one Idaho sports expert says the fans and the team know they are the underdogs.

“I think there’s no illusions that the Vandals will knock off a good SEC team,” said Dave Southorn, sports reporter for the Idaho Statesman. “The Vandals have struggled on the road, but thy team has noted that games in recent years at LSU, Texas A&M and North Carolina mean they won’t be intimidated by the environment.”

The Vandals are led by first-year, Head Coach Paul Petrino, who has yet to make a decision on his starting quarterback for this weekend’s game; the potential candidates are redshirt freshman Chad Challich, junior quarterback Josh McCain and senior Taylor Davis. But others feel that the starter is already set to go for the upcoming game.

“It’s almost certain the senior Taylor Davis will get the nod with both Chad Challich and Josh McCain dealing with shoulder injuries,” Southorn said.

Southourn spoke with Dezmon Epps, junior wide receiver for the Vandals, who says they are ready to compete.

“Our biggest thing is playing hard and not being scared; we’re going to put up a fight they might not be expecting, “ Epps told Southourn.

The game will kick off Saturday at 6:30 p.m. at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium.

Story contributed by:  Taylor Kamnetz tkamnetz@go.olemiss.edu, Brandon Rook (bcrook@go.olemiss.edu),  and Hanna Jalawan hjalawan@yahoo.com.

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