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Daniels’ Alabama Preview: Key to Rebel Win is Limiting Turnovers

Ole Miss looks to defeat Alabama for the second straight year.

Coming off of two 70+ point performances, the Rebels head to Tuscaloosa, Alabama to face the Alabama Crimson Tide in a prime time, 8:15 p.m. CT game on ESPN. The Rebels have scored an average of 74.5 points this season against UT-Martin and Fresno State while Alabama has a combined of just 72 points against Wisconsin and Middle Tennessee.

Chad Kelly has two impressive games under his belt, but this is the game that we will see what he is really made of. In the first two games, Kelly is 29/40 for 557 passing yards, six passing touchdowns, and an interception. He also has six rushes for 46 yards, and 2 touchdowns on the ground. Kelly should be the only quarterback that we see come Saturday except for designed runs for DeVante Kincade and Jeremy Liggins.

Ole Miss seems to have a running game figured out this year but in Bryan-Denny Stadium that will really be tested. Can we still get those “dirty runs” as Coach Freeze calls them and get positive yards against a proven defense? We will find out.

The receiving corps have looked great this year, and I do not see that being any different against a tougher opponent. Laquon Treadwell will have a lot of the focus on him, so I like to think Cody Core will have a big game.

Treadwell should have a big game as well because he is two inches taller than Alabama’s tallest cornerback, Marlon Humphrey, a freshman whose inexperience could be exposed covering Treadwell. Their best cornerback Cyrus Jones is just 5’10 compared to a 6’3 Treadwell. I like Treadwell and Core to be targeted and have plenty of receptions. Evan Engram has been surprisingly quiet in the first two games with just one catch. Hopefully he will look like the Engram that we are anticipating this year in this game.

The Landshark Defense will be up against a tough running back in junior Derrick Henry. We have got to attack the Alabama running game to force Lane Kiffin call some passing plays involving quarterback Jacob Coker to possibly force some turnovers. Ole Miss as given up a few long runs between the tackles this season and they have to limit that against Alabama.

Being the first real test for the Rebels this season, I think the key to winning this game is of course limiting the turnovers, but we have got to run our offense at a fast pace which Nick Saban does not like. They faced Middle Tennessee last weekend who ran an up-tempo offense but this will be the first time they will face an up-tempo team with this many weapons on offense.

My Pick: Ole Miss over Alabama 27-20

Grant DanielsGrant Daniels, a student at Oxford High School, is sports correspondent for HottyToddy.com. Email him at hottytoddynews@gmail.com

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