ATLANTA — Laquon Treadwell is many things — Ole Miss star, the SEC’s leading receiver and possibly the first receiver taken in next year’s NFL Draft — but he is decidedly not satisfied with how the 2015 season played out for the Rebels (9-3, 6-2 SEC), who as coach Hugh Freeze said were a wacky 4th-and-25 Arkansas lateral away from playing in the conference title game.
“We wanted to end up in the SEC Championship. 4th-and-25, messed that up. Win a national championship, fell short of that,” said Treadwell, who along with Robert Nkemdiche, Laremy Tunsil and Tony Conner highlighted the program’s legendary 2013 signing class. “Those were our goals coming in to this class. We always wanted to do better, and we knew we could do better. We’ll just have to keep working and keep pushing for it.”
As Treadwell weighs returning to Ole Miss for his senior year against getting a jump-start on his pro career, the natural follow-up question becomes: Will the bitter taste of falling short this season affect his decision?
“Yeah, definitely it does. Our junior class was different coming in,” Treadwell said. “Nobody expected us to come in and make the impact like we did. Once we did, our teammates kind of joined with us and wanted to make a bigger impact. Other guys seen it. Recruits started seeing it. They talked to us about it all the time how we set the tone for Ole Miss and how they want to be there. It means something to us.”
What the junior from Crete, Ill., does know is that he won’t make such a major choice in haste. Treadwell said he promised his coaches he’d wait until after Ole Miss plays Oklahoma State in the Sugar Bowl to make an announcement. So credit the speedy receiver for taking things slowly when it matters most — even if Ole Miss fans are dying for an answer today.
“I’m thinking about both sides, taking it one day at a time,” Treadwell said. “I’m not in a rush to make a decision.”