By Adam Brown
Ole Miss head coach Lane Kiffin addressed media members on Monday as the team looks ahead to their matchup with the Arkansas Razorbacks on Saturday.
Following the 63-48 loss to No. 2 Alabama, Coach Nick Saban speculated postgame that Kiffin and his staff knew the Alabama defensive signals before the game.
“It seemed like everything we did though they had an answer for,” Saban said after the game. “I don’t know if they had our signals or what. That’s not anything unusual. It seemed like every time we called something, they had the best play that they could have against it.”
“We did not do that,” Kiffin said Monday, in reference to knowing the plays beforehand.
“I have never known the signals, and I have never paid attention to that while I was there,” Kiffin said. “They would not even be the same as this is a new coordinator. I love Coach (Saban) and have a lot of respect for him, but if you understand tempo, it would not help us.”
“The Rebels call the next play before the last play is even over,” Kiffin said. “Before the (refs) even mark the ball we call our play. As they scramble to get a play called they are just trying to get their guys lined up. By the time someone relays it to us, we are already snapping the ball.”
Ole Miss’ defense has given up a lot of yardage to their opponents on the season so far while Kiffin and his coaching staff are attempting to build up the player’s confidence in the system.
“Confidence is very fragile no matter who you are,” Kiffin said. The best quarterbacks in the world get hit around in the Super Bowls. We see them play bad. When we are in a run like this and your struggling in that phase of the game it is hard … playing some great players in first-round picks trying to cover.”
According to Kiffin, a big part of regaining that confidence comes in the form of a fresh start. “Hopefully, that happens this week every week is a new week and a new life. What you have done before never matters, never has … it’s all new,” Kiffin said.
Against Arkansas, Kiffin looks for the defense to “play much better.”
Redshirt sophomore Matt Corral has embraced the new style of play at Ole Miss under Kiffin and Lebby. In just three games, Corral has thrown for 1080 yards and nine touchdowns.
“He is A+,” Kiffin said. “[Corral] has made so many plays and bailed us out on so many different things. He and Mac are probably one and two in QB efficiency in the country. Played lights out, which is difficult. I don’t know many people expected this again having no spring. While in a QB competition it’s not like he is an established starter in the third year of a system. This is all new for him.”
Ole Miss and Arkansas will square off at 2:30 p.m. on ESPN2.