With fall camp in full swing , there have been many players who have impressed so far.
Jerrell Powe, Jonathan Cornell, Rishaw Johnson are among the few who have shown that they are ready for what the SEC schedule has ahead.
There are also players who entered the Ole Miss program with high expectations, in which some were delivered with a promising freshman season and others disappointed.
Some had to redshirt to gain strength and are now to the level to get ready to impact. In terms of depth, there are a select few that Ole Miss has to depend on to step up their game for the Rebels to have a successful 2010 campaign.
After losing key players such as Dexter McCluster, Shay Hodge, and Patrick Trahan, Ole Miss has to depend on someone else to carry the load.
Obviously, no one can match the production a player such as McCluster brought to the table, but Ole Miss can hope to limit the damage by having a young player step up and take it to the 'next level'.
Who are the players that have the best chance to breakout in 2010 for the Rebels? Derek Stephens takes a look.
D.T. Shackelford had a very productive freshman year for the Rebels in 2009.
Shackelford posted 20 tackles on the year (15 solo) including 2.0 TFL and one interception returned for a touchdown.
He was also tabbed All-SEC Freshman team by the SEC Coaches.
Also, during the Grove Bowl (spring game), Shackelford had a game-tying four tackles.
Although Shackelford was beaten out by upcoming senior Jonathan Cornell at the middle linebacker spot, Shackelford will likely see a lot of time at the outside linebacker spots as well.
The Rebels will need to rely on Shackelford to provide depth to one of the best front seven units in the SEC.
The Lynn Haven, FL native came into 2008 with as much hype as any running back in Ole Miss history.
Even Phil Steele, a preseason expert, tabbed Enrique Davis 2nd team preseason All-SEC 2nd team before he even stepped on the field.
Needless to say, many were disappointed.
The past two seasons, Davis has just 354 yards and 5 touchdowns.
After a sophomore slump by Brandon Bolden, which prompted the staff to move the speedy all-utility Dexter McCluster to RB last year, Davis enters his junior season again competing against Bolden and others for the bulk of carries.
Davis has impressed during the offseason and has been noted as looking like the running back Ole Miss was expecting him to be.
During the Grove Bowl, Davis rushed for 54 yards on six carries and added a touchdown.
In the fall camp's first scrimmage, Davis broke off a 56 TD run on a 4th and 1.
Davis seems poised to finally live up to the hype in Oxford.
Even some Ole Miss fans might not know who Melvin Harris is, but it would be hard to not recognize his 6'7" frame towering over everyone on the sidelines the past two seasons.
After gaining close to 25 pounds and adjusting to the system, Harris looks to be, at the very least, a vital goalline threat for the Rebels.
With Shay Hodge and Dexter McCluster gone, the Rebs are thin at receiver and need some help to aid seniors Markeith Summers and Lionel Breaux and upcoming sophomore Jesse Grandy.
Throughout spring and early during fall camp, Harris has been a pleasant surprise, showing his improvement in every area. Harris is now able to use his body to gain an edge on the jump balls that are likely to come his way this fall.
During the Grove Bowl, Harris came down with 2 receptions for 71 yards and a touchdown. In the first fall camp scrimmage, Harris led the receivers with 3 catches for 56 yards and a touchdown.
Asked about Harris afterwards, Nutt reiterated the fact that Harris will likely be a threat.
“Melvin Harris has had a really good camp and continues to make plays. I’m really excited about him.”
Whether or not he becomes a go-to-guy, the Rebs are going to depend on Harris to give them added depth at a position that desperately needs it.