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Game balls from USC-Ole Miss

Game balls from Ole Miss9/25/09

New feature here on the blog: game balls, which we’ll hand out after every win.

I know, helmet stickers are all the rage now. But I’m a traditionalist: I can’t stand the designated hitter rule, I don’t like hearing holiday music before December, and the coffee’s black – with a packet of Splenda.

Besides, game balls have more permanence than stickers.

(Not that The State is springing for actual, commemorative balls – that would be an NCAA violation.)

With further ado, the envelopes please …

DefenseEric Norwood – Two sacks, several pressures, a tipped punt. USC’s new sacks king was nearly unblockable. No sticker for Ole Miss LT Bradley Sowell on the Rebs’ blogs.

Cliff Matthews – Two sacks, one a rip-and-strip of QB Jevan Snead that, from an athletic standpoint, anyway, was similar to Georgia DE David Pollack’s one-motion pressure/interception of Corey Jenkins in the end zone of the 2002 game.

Darian Stewart – Drills Dexter McCluster on Rebs’ attempt at razzle-dazzle. Breaks up Snead’s fourth-down pass on final drive. Played with a bum shoulder he was icing after the game.

OffenseStephen Garcia – Outplays a possible first-round NFL QB. Takes a pounding in the pocket, gets shot up at halftime, plays through bruised (at least) ribs and leads the charge to the student section. Gutsy.

Kenny Miles – Ran hard, ran tough and held on to the ball. There might be a changing of the guard at tailback, at least in terms of how the carries are divided.

Kyle Nunn – Suspended the first three games, the Sumter native played the entire second half in place of LT Jarriel King. Might be a changing of the guard there, as well.

Special teamsSpencer Lanning – Made all three FGs, averaged 42.9 yards per punt and had the biggest tackle of the night – a TD/game-saver on an Ole Miss punt return. Ryan Succop would be proud.