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Ole Miss Falls to No. 1 Alabama

Alabama proved why it is the most dominant team SEC in more ways than one in its 66-3 win over Ole Miss.
“They beat us soundly in all three phases,” head coach Matt Luke said. “The biggest differenve in the first half was the turnover for a touchdown. Third down was big for us all night. They were able to stay on the field and we were not.”
After the two teams exchanged three-and-outs to begin the game, Alabama took control in every facet of the game. Bo Scarbrough opened up the scoring with a six-yard touchdown rush. Levi Wallace made it 14-0 less than a minute later when he picked off a Shea Patterson pass and returned it 35 yards for a touchdown.
Gary Wunderlich added a 26-yard field goal to make it 14-3, getting the Rebels on the board. The Rebels’ tumultuous opening quarter was capped off by the first of two Jalen Hurts touchdown passes, this one to tight end Hale Hentges that capped off an 85-yard drive. Hurts hit Josh Jacobs for an 18-yard score a short time later and capped off the half with a rushing touchdown to give the Crimson Tide a 35-3 lead at the break.
Alabama cruised the remainder of the way and piled on 31 second half points. Hurts was 12-19 for 197 tards and two touchdowns. He rushed for 101 yards and compiled a passer rating of 185.
Ole Miss struggled to find a rhythm offensively for much of the night, largely due to Alabama’s fierce pass rush that repeatedly flushed Shea Patterson out of the pocket and sacked him five times. Patterson was 14 for 29 on the night and threw for 165. The Rebels did not reach the end zone. Ole Miss was 0-13 on third down.
“You cannot sustain drives and move the football if you can’t convert on third down,” offensive coordinator Phil Longo said. “it was our goal going into the game not to get into the third and long situations we got into at Cal. I thought we were able to establish the run game, but it was not early enough.”
The team gained 253 yards of total offense. Alabama wracked up 613 yards of total offense, 365 of which came on the ground. Eight different Alabama players ran the football and nine different players had catches. The Crimson Tide were clicking on all cylinders offensively for the entirety of the night.
“Watching them on film, I knew they were really good,” Patterson said. “They are number one for a reason and came out and made a statement tonight.”
Jordan Wilkins had his best game of the 2017 season in a night where Ole Miss rushed the football with more effectiveness than it did in the first three games. The senior running back tallied 101 yards on 12 carries and broke runs of 21 and 44 yards. D.K. Metcalf led all receivers with 3 catches for 46 yards.
With the loss, Ole Miss fell to 2-2 on the season and 0-1 in SEC play. The Rebels will try to put this one behind them and return to action at Auburn next Saturday. Kickoff is slated for 11 a.m.
“We are going to watch this tape, then flush it and move onto the next one,” Luke said. “We still have eight chances to go win football games and I think that is the most important thing for us moving forward.”

Courtesy of Ole Miss Sports

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