Facing the unique challenge of stopping Georgia Tech's triple-option offense in the 2013 Music City Bowl, Ole Miss is running cut-block drills in practice to prepare for the Yellow Jackets. Head coach Hugh Freeze isn't a fan of the drills, calling them "scary," per the Jackson Clarion-Ledger.
"I hate watching it," Freeze said. "I want to blow (the whistle) several times ... but I know if we don't practice it we'll pay for it. Our guys are doing a phenomenal job of giving us the look that they're going to see, but it's extremely scary."
A cut block is employed when an offensive player dives for the legs of an opposing defensive player, instead of rising and blocking him upright. If one offensive lineman engages a defender high and another goes low, that's an illegal chop block, but one-on-one cut blocks are within the rules. The "scary" aspect is that low blocks are believed by many to create a greater chance of knee or ankle injuries, though the notion hasn't exactly been studied. In addition to using them on the line, Georgia Tech's wide receivers cut block on the outside, as well.
The Rebels are using scout-team players to provide the cuts and prepare their defenders. While Freeze doesn't enjoy watching the drills play out, linebacker Serdarius Bryant is a fan.
"I love the cut drill, to tell you the truth," linebacker Serderius Bryant said. "It helped me out a lot. The first day I got cut every time I did it. That's not my type of game, but (Wednesday) I did not get cut once."
Ole Miss and Georgia Tech meet in the Music City Bowl at Nashville's LP Field on Dec. 30. The game is set for a 3:15 p.m. ET kickoff and will air on ESPN.