Ole Miss Football: Shea Patterson has game in his hands against South Alabama

Ole Miss football enters the 2017 season with a lot of controversy surrounding the program. Shea Patterson won’t flinch, instead he’ll rise to the occasion.

The Ole Miss Rebels have quite the challenge ahead of them to stay in the SEC West race in 2017. They’ve lost their head coach, continuity in the program and lose 11 starters from last year. The scandal surrounding the program right now and the resignation of former head coach Hugh Freeze is the biggest storyline for Ole Miss entering the season.

Ole Miss takes on the South Alabama Jaguars in Week 1. Sophomore quarterback Shea Patterson has the offense in his hands and Ole Miss is a 24-point favorite over South Alabama. Redshirt sophomore receiver Van Jefferson could be Patterson’s best target. Both Patterson and Jefferson could have a huge game against the Jaguars.

Patterson is has one of the brightest futures of any quarterback in the SEC. Him and Georgia sophomore Jacob Eason could both be first round picks in a future NFL Draft, eventually. For now, he is one of the few hopes of the Ole Miss football program. If he gets them to .500, that would be surpassing expectations.

The toughest non-conference game for Ole Miss is the California Golden Bears. Ole Miss’s other two games in the non-conference slate are South Alabama and Tennessee-Martin out of the FCS. Going undefeated through non-conference play would give Ole Miss a big confidence boost entering their SEC slate.

A huge challenge for Patterson is keeping the offense together. He has senior RB Jordan Wilkins in the backfield to rely on. However, Patterson is the glue that holds the Rebel offense together. It starts with a huge performance against South Alabama.