Duhon Anchors Offensive Line

Duhon Anchors Offensive Line

Southern Miss is in the final days of preparation for a huge conference showdown with the SMU Mustangs. Both teams come in with very high expectations and possibly a conference championship on the horizon. We talked with Eagle lineman Joe Duhon about the game and the recent success of the offensive line.

Energy is high on the Southern Miss campus as the coaches, fans, and players all know that something special is in reach for this football team.

To get to where they want to go, however, they must face a tough SMU team who has stood toe to toe with some really good programs including a defeat of TCU already this year.

The Eagles are coming off of a bye week, and it couldn't have come at a better time.

"We had great energy at practice this week," said junior offensive guard Joe Duhon.

"SMU is a great team, and we are really looking forward to playing them. They will be one of the best teams we play this year, so we are working hard to get ready to go against them."

Duhon said the off week benefited the Eagles in many ways.

"The bye week served us real well," he said. "We had a lot of guys banged up, and that happens at this time during the season. We had a chance to get those guys healthy and get them ready to go for Saturday. I went home and spent time with my family, so it was great to get away for a few days."

The offensive line continues to improve with each week, and Duhon says it is directly related to the increased chemistry among the line.

"The inside three has been together since we've been freshman," he said. "The tackles came in as JuCo transfers, and we've just taken some time to build that chemistry."

"We've been going out to eat together, and we even went out and played laser tag together. So we are building, and we know we had a rough start to the season as we were learning to jel, but it all came together against Navy.

"We still have a long way to go and a lot to improve on, but our chemistry has just been great, so we are real happy with that."

They'll need to be at full strength and playing their best to slow down this SMU attacking defense.

"They have some real big guys," he said. "They run the basic 3-4 defense with someone who comes walking up. It is very similar to our defense. They do a lot of different things though to confuse the line, so we've been studying film to try and pick up on some things."

The Eagles and Mustangs kick-off Saturday night in "The Rock." It is homecoming weekend for Southern Miss, and should be a fantastic and high energy game.

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