Ole Miss looked to get back on track against New Mexico State Saturday, and the Rebels did just that.
Junior signal caller Chad Kelly completed 24-of-33 passes for a career-high 384 yards and touchdown passes of 20, 37 and 66 yards, as the Rebels routed the Aggies 52-3 in front of 60,154 fans for homecoming at Vaught-Hemingway stadium.
Kelly also rushed 32 yards and added another score on the ground, as Ole Miss amassed 665 yards of total offense, which was the most since the Rebels posted 751 yards of offense against Troy in 2013.
“It was good to get back on the field and see our kids compete,” said Ole Miss head coach Hugh Freeze. “It was good to play at home in front of our crowd in an early game. Hopefully we can use that time to rest and recover.”
After both teams traded field goals to start the game, Ole Miss took over, reeling off 49-straight points and took a 31-3 lead into the half.
Following the Aggies 39-yard field goal to tie the game, Kelly marched the Rebels 65 yards down the field in five plays, and sophomore running back Jordan Wilkins capped the drive with an 11-yard TD run up the middle that put Ole Miss up 10-3 with 3:03 left in the first quarter. Junior Akeem Judd added a 3-yard scoring run as the quarter ended to give the Rebels a 17-3 lead after one.
Ole Miss continued scoring in the second quarter with a 66-yard scoring strike from Kelly to sophomore wide out Markell Pack. Kelly added a 4-yard rushing score later in the quarter that put the Rebels up 31-3 heading into the half.
Kelly added to the Ole Miss total in the third quarter with a pair of touchdown passes to junior wide receiver Laquon Treadwell of 20 and 37 yards, respectively. Treadwell finished the game with eight catches for a career-high 136 yards and two scores. It also marked Treadwell’s fifth career 100-yard receiving game.
“There were some good individual efforts in this game,” Freeze said. “There were also some things that we need to continue to improve on. It is our job to as coaches to do that and address those things, and then hopefully demand where to make corrections if necessary. In this profession, you have to enjoy those wins that you have.”
After allowing the Aggie offense to gain 67 yards and convert three third downs on the first drive, the Ole Miss defense stiffened and shut out New Mexico State the rest of the way. The Rebels allowed just 167 yards of total offense after the opening drive and forced two turnovers with four sacks.
Scoring continued in the fourth quarter for the Rebels after sophomore Eugene Brazley went straight up the middle for 78 yards to the end zone to give Ole Miss a 52-3 lead with 11:47 left.
Ole Miss will remain out of conference next week when the Rebels travel to Memphis, Tennessee to play the Tigers at the Liberty Bowl Saturday. The game will be televised on ABC with an 11 a.m. kickoff.
Courtesy of Ole Miss Sports