BLOG: It’s been a while since Ole Miss won its last Southeastern Conference football game. Sixteen games to be exact after the Rebels squandered a fourth-quarter lead last weekend against SEC newcomer Texas A&M.
Ole Miss (3-3 overall, 0-2 SEC) will be back at it today, looking for that elusive conference victory, with a homecoming matchup against the reeling Auburn Tigers (1-4, 0-3) at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium. The game is set for 11:21 a.m. and will be televised on the SEC Network.
PLENTY OF HEART: According to Ron Higgins of the Commercial Appeal, Ole Miss cornerbacks coach Wesley McGriff had three stints put into his heart Friday but will still coach today.
Friday’s Oxford EAGLE included the fifth 20-page Game Day Preview football magazine of the year. Within those pages are plenty of features and quick hitters to quench any Ole Miss fans’ football thirst: Cover athlete Jeff Scott has made great strides both on and off the football field this season and is on pace to be Ole Miss’ 10th player in program history to eclipse 900 yards in a season; The weekly lookback revisits Ole Miss’ 500th win, which happened to come against the Auburn Tigers; Ole Miss freshman Mike Hilton fields a series of questions during the first “Rebel Q&A” ranging from the A&M game to recruiting; Cameron Whigham is a player the Rebel coaches have tried to replace time and time again, but the junior defensive end has been too consistent to let one of the youngsters snatch his starting spot; Junior college transfer Pierce Burton is adjusting well to the South and specifically his starting role with the Rebels; Former Rebel lineman Matt Luke is making the most of his return trip to Oxford; Q. Mireles is a former Houston Nutt signee who after a stint at Hinds Community College looks to be headed back to Ole Miss.
Also, want to catch up on the week that was in Ole Miss football or how the Rebels have done this season? Click HERE to see all the archived articles, blogs, videos from the season.
PREGAME NOTES: This is the 37th all-time meeting between the Rebels and Auburn Tigers dating back to 1928… Auburn leads the all-time series 27-9… Ole Miss is just 2-9 against the Tigers in Oxford, with their last victory coming in 2008 (17-7)… Today’s game also marks the 85th homecoming game at Ole Miss since 1924… The Rebels lost last year’s homecoming game 27-7 to Louisiana Tech… Ole Miss has not lost when scoring first this year (3-0), but is winless when the opponent scores first (0-3)…
BY THE NUMBERS: Through six games, Ole Miss has already scored more touchdowns (25) than all of last year (24)… The Rebels rank 25th nationally in rushing offense (213.0 ypg)… Ole Miss ranks fourth in the SEC and in the top 20 nationally in sacks (2.8/game) and tackles for loss (7.7/game)… On offense, Ole Miss has scored in 17 of its 19 red zone trips (89.5 percent, fourth in the SEC), while the Rebels have allowed 16 scores in 24 (66.7 percent, T-3rd in SEC)… Junior running back Jeff Scott ranks seventh in the SEC with 85.0 rushing yards per game and has two 100-yard performances… Sophomore receiver Donte Moncrief ranks fifth in the SEC with 75.5 yards per game and second with five touchdown catches… Auburn receiver Emory Blake is the ninth receiver in school history to record 100 career catches; Blake ranks 10th in career yardage (1,573) after a career-best total 118 against Arkansas… Auburn coach Gene Chizik is 31-14 in four seasons at Auburn; Chizik is 36-33 in six seasons as a head coach… Auburn running back Onterio McCalebb leads the SEC and is ranked ninth nationally in kick return average (30.62); Auburn as a team is second in the SEC in kickoff return average (27.0)… Auburn linebacker Daren Bates leads the SEC and ranks 10th nationally with 10.8 tackles per game.
QB SHUFFLE: Chizik announced earlier this week that junior QB Clint Moseley will start in place of sophomore Kiehl Frazier today against the Rebels. Frazier has struggled mightily this season for the Tigers, completing 56 of 103 passes for 664 yards and two touchdowns with a whopping eight interceptions. Frazier’s eight picks ties him with Ole Miss quarterback Bo Wallace for the most in the conference.
AROUND THE LEAGUE (as of 9:45 a.m.):
Auburn at Ole Miss, 11:21 a.m. (SEC Network)
Alabama at Missouri, 2:30 p.m. (CBS)
Florida at Vanderbilt, 5 p.m. (ESPNU)
Kentucky at Arkansas, 6 p.m. (FSN)
South Carolina at LSU, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
Tennessee at Mississippi State, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
Texas A&M vs. Louisiana Tech at Independence Stadium in Shreveport, La., 8:15 p.m. (ESPNU)
WR (X) Donte Moncrief
LT Emmanuel McCray
LG Aaron Morris
C Evan Swindall
RG A.J. Hawkins
RT Pierce Burton
TE Ferbia Allen
WR (Z) Vince Sanders
WR (H) Ja-Mes Logan or Philander Moore or Korvic Neat
QB Bo Wallace
RB Randall Mackey or Jeff Scott
DE C.J. Johnson
DT Bryon Bennett or Carlton Martin
NT Issac Gross
DE Cameron Whigham
MIKE Mike Marry
STINGER Denzel Nkemdiche
HUSKIE Dehendret Collins
FCB Senquez Golson
ROVER Trae Elston
FS Cody Prewitt
BCB Charles Sawyer
PK Bryson Rose
P Jim Broadway
KO Nathan Noble
Holder Chris Conley
LS WIll Denny
KR Jaylen Walton or Randall Mackey
PR Philander Moore
QB Clint Moseley
RB Onterio McCalebb
FB Jay Prosch
WR Emory Blake
WR Travante Stallworth
TW Trovon Reed or Quan Bray
LT Greg Robinson
LG John Sullen
C Reese Dismukes
RG Chad Slade
RT Patrick Miller
DE Dee Ford
DT Angelo Blackson
DT Jeffrey Whitaker
DE Corey Lemonier
SLB Jonathan Evans
MLB Jake Holland
WLB Daren Bates
CB Jonathon Mincy
FS Demetruce McNeal
SS Jermaine Whitehead
CB Chris Davis
PK Cody Parkey
P Steven Clark
H Ryan White
DS Jake Lembke
KR Onterio mcCalebb
PR Trovon Reed or Quan Bray
——— SCORING SUMMARY ———
OLE MISS 7, Auburn 0 (7:14/Q1): The Rebels used plenty of trickery on their first drive to take an early lead on the Auburn Tigers. Ole Miss capped its 80-yard drive in fashion when converted running back Randall Mackey took a toss from quarterback Bo Wallace towards the right side of the line, pulled up and hit Wallace wide open in front of the Auburn sideline. Wallace easily ran into the end zone.
OLE MISS 14, Auburn 0 (5:39/Q1): Auburn shot itself in the foot on the ensuing drive. After picking up minimal yards on the drive’s first two plays, Auburn reserve center Tunde Fariyke snapped the ball over Clint Moseley‘s head and Ole Miss defensive end C.J. Johnson was able to recover the ball in Auburn’s end zone 28 yards behind the line of scrimmage.
Ole Miss 14, AUBURN 7 (13:56/Q2): The Tigers quickly responded, driving 74 yards on 13 plays. Sophomore running back Tre Mason capped the drive with a 1-yard touchdown run around the left side of the offensive line.
AUBURN 14, Ole Miss 14 (5:56/Q2): After forcing an Ole Miss punt from deep in its own territory, Moseley hit Sammie Coates on a 42-yard pass and then Mason scored from 6 yards out.
AUBURN 17, Ole Miss 14 (1:00/Q2): Auburn kicker Cody Parkey gave the Tigers their first lead of the game by knocking through a 46-yard field goal attempt.
OLE MISS 17, Ole Miss 17 (0:00/Q2): Ole Miss drove the length of the field with one minute remaining in the half and Bryson Rose booted a 28-yard field goal to tie the game as time expired.
OLE MISS 24, Auburn 17 (13:53/Q3): Ole Miss started the second half off with a bang, driving 73 yards on four plays. After Wallace hit Ja-Mes Logan on a 40-yard pass, the quarterback kept the ball on the next play and scored from 1-yard out.
Ole Miss 24, AUBURN 20 (4:38/Q3): Parkey got Auburn back on the scoreboard by converting a 31-yard field goal attempt to cap 51-yard drive.
OLE MISS 27, Auburn 20 (13:28/Q4): Rose extended Ole Miss’ lead to 27-20 with a 39-yard field goal.
OLE MISS 34, Auburn 20 (5:02/Q4): Jeff Scott made perhaps Ole Miss’ play of the season mid-way through the fourth quarter. Holding onto a one-score lead, the junior running back caught a pass over the middle from Wallace and looked like he was brought down by an Auburn defender. Instead, Scott rolled over the defender, never touched the turf and raced 55 yards to the end zone to extend Ole Miss’ lead. (Below is video of the wacky touchdown play)
OLE MISS 41, Auburn 20 (1:10/Q4): Ole Miss put the game away on the next drive when Ole miss linebacker Mike Marry picked off Moseley on the first play of the drive to record his first career interception. Three plays later, Wallace forced his way into the end zone from 2 yards out to seal the victory.
FINAL SCORE: Ole Miss 41, Auburn 20.
BY THE NUMBERS: Today’s win marks Ole Miss’ first against an SEC opponent in 16 attempts, dating back to Oct. 2 2010 against Kentucky (42-35)… Wallce did a little bit of everything for Ole Miss. The sophomore QB completed 17 of 22 passes for 226 yards and one touchdown, rushed for 39 yard and two scores and also hauled in a 25-yard touchdown pass from Mackey… Wallace’s trifecta marks the first one in school history… Scott led Ole Miss with 137 yards rushing on 21 carries and also caught three passes for 70 yards and one touchdown… Ole Miss receiver Donte Moncrief was held to just four receptions and 27 yards… Moseley completed 11 of 18 passes for 112 yards with no touchdowns and one interception… Mason led Auburn with 82 yards rushing and two scores on 18 carries…With 229 points, the Rebels have surpassed last year’s total of 193…Wallace’s two rushing touchdowns are the most by a Rebel quarterback since Jeremiah Masoli did it against LSU in 2010.
HE SAID IT: “On the sideline everyone was saying, “finish. Finish.” We got tired of everybody saying “good job playing hard” and still losing so we had to find a way to come up with a win,” Ole Miss linebacker Mike Marry on finishing the game.
“I think we just call that Touchdown Jesus. You play until the whistle blows and that’s what he did. Believe it or not, I never feel really good about replays, but I had a total piece about that one. I don’t know why, but I just felt like this one is going for us,” Ole Miss coach Hugh Freeze on Jeff Scott‘s touchdown.
NEXT UP: Ole Miss has a bye week this week and will return to action Oct. 27 against Arkansas in Little Rock, Ark. (October 13, 2012)