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2022 NFL Draft: QB Matt Corral says farewell to Ole Miss, signaling draft intentions

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Ole Miss quarterback Matt Corral eliminated any lingering doubt about his football future on Friday night. The star junior published a farewell note ahead of the No. 12 Rebels’ final home game of the season against Vanderbilt. In the message, Corral wrote that the “the love on this team was and is unmatched” while making it clear he intends for this season to be his last as a college player as he declares for the 2022 NFL Draft. 

Despite being in his fourth season at Ole Miss, Corral could technically play up to two more seasons of college football since he took a redshirt as a freshman in 2018 and last year did not count against his eligibility. But as the No. 10 overall player and No. 1 quarterback in CBS Sports’ 2022 NFL Draft Prospect Rankings, he has little room to improve his professional stock.

Corral has thrown for 17 touchdowns and just 2 interceptions through 10 games, and he’s completed 66.6% of his passes for an Ole Miss team that can improve to 9-2 with a win over the Commodores. He’s also accumulated 523 yards rushing and 10 touchdowns on the ground, despite playing through an injury for much of the season’s second half.

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Second-year Ole Miss coach Lane Kiffin helped transform Corral from a shaky redshirt freshman in 2019 into one of the SEC’s top quarterbacks in 2020. This season, Corral took another huge step forward by cutting out the interception issues that plagued him at times in 2020. Kiffin responded to Corral’s farewell letter by saying “forever and always like my own!!”

NFL future: QB1?

Corral has the potential to be the program’s first top-10 draft pick since Eli Manning went No. 1 overall in the 2004 NFL Draft. In the most recent mock drafts updated by three different CBS Sports experts, Corral was the first QB selected at No. 9 overall to Washington all three times. It would be a sensible choice for Washington considering current starter Taylor Heinicke is only under contract through the 2022 season. 

“Count Washington among the teams searching for a long-term answer at quarterback next spring. Corral expects to be among the first taken in the 2022 NFL Draft,” NFL Draft writer Josh Edwards wrote.

Ole Miss’ QB future

It’s no secret the Rebels are among the many schools in hot pursuit of five-star class of 2023 quarterback Arch Manning, the grandson of program legend Archie Manning and Eli’s nephew. 

But there’s certainly no guarantee the younger Manning will pick the Rebels, and even if he does, they will still need a quarterback for the 2022 season. Kiffin has a few options, including current backups Luke Altmyer and Kinkead Dent. Altmyer is a former four-star prospect from the class of 2021, and Dent is a former three-star prospect from Flowood, Mississippi, from the class of 2019.

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But the two have thrown a combined 13 career passes. If Kiffin wanted to go with a more experienced option, he could try to shoehorn John Rhys Plumlee into the position. Plulmee has transitioned to slot receiver this season after beginning his college career at quarterback and completing 79-of-150 passes in 2019 under the previous coaching staff.

Plumlee is more of a dual-threat quarterback known less for his arm strength and more for his running, and he could be better utilized at receiver. The Rebels currently do not have any quarterbacks committed from the Class of 2022, but could be an attractive transfer destination for quarterbacks who have taken note of Corral’s development in Kiffin’s system.

Corral’s legacy

The Ole Miss athletic department has waged a Heisman campaign for Corral, and though it seems like a long shot, the season has doubtlessly etched Corral into program lore. He is one of just two players in the country to have thrown for at least 15 touchdowns while also running for 10 or more this season. Entering the Vanderbilt game, Corral also ranks in the top 20 nationally for passing yards per game, total offense per game, yards per attempt and passing efficiency.

Considering the key role he played in helping Ole Miss emerge from consecutive losing seasons in 2018 and 2019, Corral’s legacy at Ole Miss is secure. He guided the team to a .500 record in an SEC-only regular season last year and is leading the team through a memorable season in 2021.

The former four-star prospect from southern California was the perfect first quarterback for Kiffin at Ole Miss, and the tandem helped resurrect the program to a place of national relevance sooner than most anticipated.

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NBA Insider Reveals Latest On Kyrie Irving Trade

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(Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images)

 

After Kyrie Irving demanded a trade on Friday, the Brooklyn Nets acted quickly, agreeing to send him to the Dallas Mavericks on Sunday.

On Monday, NBA insider Shams Charania reported that the trade was now official, and he gave the details on what Dallas gave up to receive the perennial All-Star point guard.

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On the surface, it looks like the Mavs didn’t give up a whole lot to get a man who is averaging 27.1 points and 5.3 assists per game while shooting 48.6 percent from the field and 37.4 percent from 3-point range this season.

Spencer Dinwiddie, who was a member of the Nets a few years ago, will give them a solid point guard and 3-point shooter, while Dorian Finney-Smith will provide them with a decent defender, but neither player gives opposing teams headaches.

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However, the Mavs are taking a significant risk here because of Irving’s off-the-court issues.

He was suspended for eight games earlier this season after promoting a documentary with antisemitic content and then failing to explain why he did so to reporters.

Last season, he refused to get vaccinated against COVID-19, which led to him missing most of the season, as New York City banned unvaccinated athletes from playing.

Some also wonder if Irving and Luka Doncic can mesh together in the same backcourt, as both are ball-dominant players.

Then there is the matter of getting Irving to sign a contract extension to keep him in Dallas past this season.

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If it all works, the Mavs will have the foundation to become a championship contender, but if it doesn’t, they would have given up several of their limited trade assets for essentially nothing.

The post NBA Insider Reveals Latest On Kyrie Irving Trade appeared first on The Cold Wire.





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Dodgers Manager Withholds A Bold Claim In 2023

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The spring is usually the time for hope and lofty goals in the MLB universe.

It’s also the time for the “I’m in the best shape of my life” quotes by players, and the “we built a squad to compete” by general managers.

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With that in mind, Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts may have gone a bit too far last year.

In late March, around the end of spring training, he said that he “guaranteed” the Dodgers winning the World Series.

In reality, every sign pointed at LA being extremely competitive until the end.

Time proved that his squad was historically good, with 111 wins and just 51 losses.

However, they lost in the first round of the playoffs, against the San Diego Padres no less.

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Dodgers (and other teams’) fans blasted him for his spring training remarks.

They couldn’t believe he promised a World Series win and couldn’t even get past the Division Series.

That’s why this time, Roberts decided to be a bit more cautious with what comes out of his mouth.

“Dave Roberts, speaking to the media at Dodgers Fanfest, said he will not guarantee the Dodgers winning the World Series this season,” Jorge Castillo of the LA Times tweeted.

Talk about learning from your own mistakes.

He received so much backlash that he is trying a more conservative approach.

He knows that his Dodgers are still elite, but he prefers the team to show it on the field this time.

They might not have such a dominant regular season because the Padres improved a lot.

However, all fans want is to see them win the last game of the season.

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The post Dodgers Manager Withholds A Bold Claim In 2023 appeared first on The Cold Wire.





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Corey Kluber Fully Embraces His New Team

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Corey Kluber, one of the Boston Red Sox‘s signings for the upcoming season, has a long-standing reputation of being a baseball gentleman, a professional in all the sense of the word.

Not everybody can play for the Cleveland Guardians, the New York Yankees, the Tampa Bay Rays, and the Red Sox and still enjoy the love and respect of fans of all those franchises.

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Those are all American League contenders and have been for the better part of the last decade.

Yet everybody respects Kluber because of the way he approaches the game, like a pro: you won’t find him badmouthing a team or a fanbase.

The 36-year-old veteran is, however, enjoying his still brief time as a member of the Red Sox.

He has updated his Twitter account to include the team on his profile.

His profile picture shows him with a Red Sox hat and the letters “K-L-U-B-E-R”, but with the same art and graphic identity as the franchise that now employs him.

It actually looks very, very cool.

Kluber finally pitched something close to a full workload last season with the Rays.

He logged 164 innings and posted a 4.34 ERA that may not look so sexy, but when you compare it to his 3.57 Fielding Independent Pitching, or FIP, you know he was much better than his ERA.

A former two-time Cy Young award winner with plenty of postseason experience, Kluber is still looking for that first World Series ring.

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The Red Sox are not really favored to win it all this year, but stranger things have happened in baseball.

The post Corey Kluber Fully Embraces His New Team appeared first on The Cold Wire.





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