Everyone remembers what happened last year when Ole Miss and Auburn battled it out in Oxford. It was a high-scoring affair that ended in a 35-31 Tigers’ win. But it wasn’t that simple.
Rebels wide receiver Laquon Treadwell was on his way into the end zone for the go-ahead score late in the fourth quarter when he broke his leg and fumbled the ball on the half-yard line.
It’s hard to forget, especially for Treadwell.
“They’re going to feel my pain,” Treadwell told reporters Monday. “I’m just going to play my hardest and play with my heart like I did last week, and my team will do the same. We’re looking to get a W.”
Treadwell isn’t hiding his emotions surrounding this week’s opponent.
“It brings the fire out in me honestly,” Treadwell said. “On Sunday, coach Freeze was talking in a meeting and he wasn’t even talking about Auburn, but it was in the back of my head. I started feeling it Sunday after last week’s game honestly. I’ll have an extra edge in me. I’ll play with an edge. I know my teammates will feel me all week and feel where I’m coming from, and I think they’ll play with an edge also.”
Freeze admitted he understands what Treadwell is thinking leading up to the matchup with Auburn, but he wants his star wide receiver and his team to go in with the right focus.
“We’re not into revenge games,” Freeze told reporters Monday. “We won’t talk about that. We’ll talk about the next opportunity for us to win a conference game, which is very important to us and to our people and our university and our football program. We really won’t talk about last year at all.”
Treadwell knows what’s at stake. Auburn didn’t just end his season last year. The loss to the Tigers also erased any SEC West or National Championship hopes Ole Miss had. To him, that just adds to the motivation.
“SEC West title. Nothing else to really be talked about,” Treadwell said. “They’re another opponent in the way. Our team has our goals still in front of us. We’re hungry for another win. We’ll attack practice this week and go out and compete.”
“The sky’s the limit for this team. As long as (quarterback) Chad (Kelly) is comfortable back there and he can make his read, we can do whatever we want to do.”
Obviously, things have not gone well for Auburn this season, but Freeze says the Tigers are “a scary team.”
It will be intriguing to see how Auburn bounces back coming off a tough four-overtime loss to Arkansas, but Freeze knows coach Gus Malzahn will have his team ready. And for Treadwell, he’s trying to avoid a repeat of last year.
“I think it’s the same situation here,” Treadwell said. “Our title hopes can get dashed if we lose this game. I know it’s not just me that is going to be putting all my effort into the game. I know the whole team will. If they beat us, they’re going to have to beat us fighting, and I don’t think that’s possible if we play together like we did this past weekend.”
Treadwell is putting together an impressive season thus far, and certainly, he’s looking to add to it against Auburn.
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- Ole Miss OL Christian Morris suffered spinal cord contusion against Texas A&M
- The Rebels continue to lead for one of Florida’s top WRs