April 14, 2012

Brunetti, Wallace 'neck and neck' entering final week

OXFORD, Miss. -- Bo Wallace closed out a strong week in the two-man race to be Ole Miss' starting quarterback with three touchdown passes in the Rebels' scrimmage Saturday at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium.

Wallace completed 10 of 23 passes for 113 yards and three touchdowns, including the "game-winner" to Vincent Sanders in an "overtime" drill at the end of the two-hour scrimmage.

Wallace's competitor, Barry Brunetti, completed 12 of 17 passes for 119 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions. The second of those picks was intercepted by Charles Sawyer in the "overtime" period.

"I'd be so pleased with one on one play and then so mad on the next," Ole Miss coach Freeze said. "Just in my gut, standing out there, I thought Bo had a little better day, but Barry had his share of plays too. We'll go grade it and evaluate it and see."

Both quarterbacks made plays with their legs as well. Wallace rushed five times for 32 yards and a touchdown, while Brunetti had seven carries for 41 yards and a pair of TDs.

"I felt like I did pretty good," Brunetti said. "I felt like we moved the ball pretty well as a team but a couple of drives, I didn't finish on and I was kind of upset with myself for not finishing. I feel like I moved the ball a little bit better today and I kind of controlled the offense a little bit better than usual. Mostly, I just have to finish on drives."

"I'm not real pleased with it, but at the same time, it's never as good as it seems and never as bad as it seems," Wallace said.

Offensive coordinator Dan Werner described the quarterback race as "neck and neck" going into the final week of spring drills. Ole Miss will practice Tuesday and Thursday before wrapping things up with the Grove Bowl Saturday at 1 p.m.

"I still feel good," said Brunetti, who started two games at quarterback last season. "I just have to go and correct the mistakes and a couple of negative plays I had. I have to go in and watch the film tomorrow and try to correct those things come Tuesday.

"Mostly, right now, I'm focusing on doing what I can do. I can't control what Bo does or what they decide. I just have to do what I can do. What can I do on this play to help my team? What can I do on this drive? That's all I think about. …I'm getting a great fair shot right now."

"Barry is going to make plays every scrimmage," Wallace said. "He's athletic. He can move around in the pocket. I'm not really competing against Barry. I'm just coming out and trying to have the best day I can every day."

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