Four Keys for the Rebels vs. Baylor in the Sugar Bowl
NEW ORLEANS — The No. 8 Rebels take on No. 7 Baylor in the 2022 Sugar Bowl tonight in New Orleans. Here are four keys to an Ole Miss win over the Bears.
Baylor’s leading rusher, Abram Smith, has run for 1,429 yards on 232 attempts, good for 6.2 average yards per attempt.
When looking how he is utilized in the run game, 44% of his attempts are inside the guards, but when running outside the tackles he is averaging 7.3 yards per carry.
With that said, it will be important for Ole Miss players tasked with stopping the run to be fundamentally sound in their gap assignments in order to help put them in the best position to make a tackle.
Smith is a former linebacker who is not afraid of contact. Being physical at the point of contact will be important as Smith can break tackles and fight for extra yards.
It’s been a key all season, and that will be true in the Sugar Bowl. When the Rebels are effectively running the ball, Ole Miss is at its best. In their 10 wins this season, the Rebs are averaging 246.2 yards per game. In their two losses, 117 yards per game.
The 10-2 Ole Miss Rebels are 7-0 when gaining more yards rushing than their opponent. pic.twitter.com/vR2d3S4T6O
— David Walker (@DavidWalkerQB) January 1, 2022
Go Out with a Bang
Playing in a New Year’s Six bowl game is one of the biggest accomplishments a team can attain. While reaching that goal is nice and dandy… why not win the whole thing?
This Ole Miss team has a chance to do something no other Ole Miss team has ever done, win 11 games. Winning a Sugar Bowl and getting that 11th win would be OLE SO SWEET.
Make the Most of the Moment
The Sugar Bowl will be the last game as Rebels for many on this team, most notably quarterback Matt Corral.
At the end of the day, football is just a game but players and coaches put everything they have into it so for them it is more than just a game…. It’s their life.
For many of them it’s been their life for years and years. After the Sugar Bowl, some will go on to play at the next level and some will never get the opportunity to play football again.
Tonight in the Superdome, they should put all that to the side and focus on soaking up the moment — as it will be the last time this team will ever play together as one. This 2021 Ole Miss team has been the embodiment of a brotherhood that could not be broken.
(Feature image credit: Josh McCoy, Ole Miss)
Nick Filipich was born and raised in Biloxi, MS. He is an Ole Miss alum with a degree in Sports and Recreation Administration. A sports junkie with a great passion for all things Ole Miss, Nick played baseball and football in high school — which is where he discovered his love for sports. He is an avid Braves and Saints fan, and in his free time enjoys spending time with family, friends and his black lab, Dixie.