OXORD, Miss. — On a weekend filled with Homecoming festivities, Ole Miss did not disappoint the Vaught-Hemingway crowd as the Rebels defeated Louisiana-Monroe, 70-21, Saturday. Ole Miss moves to 4-2 on the year, while the Warhawks fall to 2-4.
The Ole Miss offense notched a school-record performance as they piled up 826 yards of total offense. The unit scored a touchdown on every single drive in the first half–and did so with ease. After one half of play, the offense had gained 536 total yards–the most in the first half by an SEC team in the last 15 years.
The Rebels fired on all cylinders early and never let up. On the Warhawks’ first drive of the game, ULM moved the ball deep into Rebel territory; however, the Ole Miss defense came up big with a 4th-down stop. This gave all the momentum to the Rebels and they never lost it!
One half of play? No problem
Following the defensive stop, Ole Miss quarterback Jordan Ta’amu led the Ole Miss offense on a 6-play, 78-yard touchdown drive. Running back Scottie Phillips capped off the drive with a two-yard rushing TD as the JUCO transfer finished with 74 yards on 12 carries and 2 touchdowns.
The Rebels took a 49-7 lead over the Warhawks at intermission. (Click here for box score.)
Ta’amu was one of many stars of the game for Ole Miss, completing 21 of his 24 passes for 374 yards and 3 TDs. The senior also ran for 63 yards on 6 attempts for 2 TDs, for a total of 5 TDs. Not to mention, he did this all in the first half!
The N.W.O (Nasty Wide Outs) displayed dominance as the three-headed force amassed over 100 yards and a touchdown, EACH.
DaMarkus Lodge led the team with 9 receptions for 179 yards and one touchdown. A.J. Brown tallied 9 receptions for 133 yards with one touchdown. D.K. Metcalf hauled in 4 receptions for 115 yards and one touchdown.
A Star is Born
The future appears bright for Rebel football fans with Matt Corral at the quarterback position. The freshman took over to start the second half, and the offense did not miss a beat. He capped off a 4-play 75-yard drive with an 11-yard touchdown pass to Scottie Phillips.
The following drive, Corral scampered down the sideline for a 61-yard touchdown, giving Ole Miss a 63-7 lead. He finished the game, going 10-for-10 for 143 yards through the air. He also rushed for 78 yards on 6 attempts.
Landshark defense takes a bite out of ULM
The Ole Miss defense came up big when the unit needed a stop. The Warhawks were held to 2-for-5 on fourth downs and only converted 33.3% of their 3rd downs. The unit flew to the football and gang tackled, showing great improvement over the last few weeks. This could be important for the Rebel defense, as they face a daunting SEC schedule over the next couple of weeks.
Next man up
After sophomore safety C.J. Miller went down with an ankle injury earlier in the game, he was replaced by Armani Linton who converted from running back to defense just this past week. Linton, who played defense his first two seasons at Ole Miss, made an immediate impact, finishing with 6 tackles, 1.5 tackles for loss, one sack, and a quarterback hurry. Linton’s performance is welcomed by a unit that is depleted with injuries.
Next up: Arkansas
Ole Miss faces the Arkansas Razorbacks in Little Rock at 6:30 p.m. (CT) next Saturday, October 13. The game will be televised on the SEC Network.