Rebels’ Head Coach Kermit Davis Discusses Offseason Growth And Excitement For Season

Rebels’ Head Coach Kermit Davis Discusses Offseason Growth And Excitement For Season

OXFORD, Miss.—The Rebels finished the 2021 season with a 13-19 record, and while they could have been better, the loss of several key players should be considered when reviewing the season.

Last season the Rebels lost sophomore point guard Daeshun Ruffin and fifth-year forward Robert Allen to season-ending knee injuries. These players made positive impacts on and off the court, and it was clearly missed down the stretch of last season. Both players are still rehabbing, but the strides they have taken to return have been unbelievable and there is reason to believe both players will be back on the floor soon.

Kermit discussed Ruffin’s journey to return to action.

“Yeah, I think so, he’s getting really close,” Davis told reporters. “He probably told you he is cleared for all non-contact right now. We essentially had a walk through this morning that’s not contact, and he will go, and you will look at him and you will not think anything is wrong. I think the knee is doing great, I think it is the leg strength around the knee. He is worked really hard, and he is getting really close. Like Daeshun said, hopefully around Oct. 11 or 12 he’s back going.”

Kermit also highlighted the impressive rehab process from Allen.

“He’s defied all odds,” Davis said. “A guy with that kind of injury, sometimes takes a year or over [to return]. Robert and I had a ton of long and deep conversations about basketball, him, and his love for the game. Gosh, it is unbelievable what he has done, I mean he is cleared for contact. He has been in contact for a week. What he has done from a rehab standpoint and the energy level he has already brought our team in the first week back is unbelievable.”

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Kermit is happy for his players to overcome their injuries, and he is excited to see what the future holds for the Rebels’ 2022 season.

“It’s been such an unbelievable group to coach every day,” Davis said. “I just think that in our league, it does not matter what sport you coach, the competition is outstanding. Coaching and recruiting has been unbelievable in the league. So, we have a lot of great opportunities. We are looking forward to it, got a good group, and I cannot wait to get started officially.”

The Ole Miss Rebels will host the Alcorn State Braves on November 7, with a November 1 exhibition matchup against West Georgia before the official opener.

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