August 21, 2006

McSwain confident he will see the field

Most have heard or read the story the Tale of Two Cities, have you heard about the one about the city with two tailbacks?

Last year Ole Miss had a lack of talent at the tailback position and was forced to move around several athletes in attempts to find one that would stand out on game day.

What they found was Mico McSwain, a Richton (MS) native that signed with Ole Miss in 2003 but spent a year at Hargrave before ever stepping foot on the Ole Miss campus. At Hargrave McSwain played defensive back, a position that he was expected to play last year before depth at the running back position became an issue.

So Ole Miss Coaches inserted McSwain at running back and the talented and speedy back didn't disappoint. Mico broke a big touchdown run against Wyoming and Vanderbilt enroute to rushing over 600 yards as a red-shirt freshman.

Now the story gets a little more interesting, now with the addition of Indiana transfer Ben Jarvus Green-Ellis, where McSwain going to play has been the million dollar question.

"I will play wherever they want me to play," McSwain laughed. "I have never punted before but I'm willing to give it a try. Right now I'm running at second string tailback, I feel confident that I will get some carries each ballgame, I know when I do get called upon, I better respond and do what I do best and that is to score touchdowns."

At one point during the spring it was thought that McSwain might be moved to wide receiver to help get the talented playmaker on the field.

"Right now we plan on playing Mico at running back," Orgeron said in an earlier press conference. "He may get some reps at wide out; it will all depend on how those guys develop. I'm sure that Dan (Werner) will find ways to get Mico involved in the game plan and get the exciting player on the field as much as possible."

One thing is for sure McSwain is handling being the No. 2 guy after seeing his stock soar after his performance last year.

"Camp is going great," McSwain said. "I'm adjusting really well to the new offense; I would say that I have about 95 percent of it down really well. This offense is a great fit for all of us on the team."

There is one goal that McSwain has for this season.

"My goal is to make plays and do everything that I have been taught to do," McSwain said. "It doesn't matter who starting the game, I just have to worry about doing well when I'm in there. I'm a playmaker and my job is to make plays, if I do that everything else will take care of itself."

When asked to compare his running style to that of Green-Ellis, McSwain just smiled before replying.

"Ben Jarvus is the type of runner that will just flat run over you," McSwain said. "He is a straight pounding type guy, I just try to make plays and use my speed to my advantage. I don't know how to really describe my style of running."

McSwain is confident he will see the field a lot this fall for the Rebels.

"Whether its returning kickoffs or punts, playing running back or lining up at slot, I'm sure I'll be out there somewhere," McSwain laughed. "I don't see that as being a problem."


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