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Ole Miss Travels to No. 2 Alabama for an SEC West Showdown

By Adam Brown
Sports Editor

Matt Corral getting set to make a throw down the field. Photo by Hannah Johnson.

Ole Miss steps back into conference place this weekend as they travel to Tuscaloosa to take on the No. 2 Alabama Crimson Tide at Bryant-Deny Stadium. Kickoff is set for 2:30 p.m. on CBS.

Ole Miss (2-2, 1-0 SEC) is coming off of a 28-20 heartbreaking loss to the California Golden Bears. Starting QB Matt Corral left the game late in the fourth quarter with a bruised rib injury. Freshman John Rhys Plumlee entered and led the red and blue on a driving score that almost tied up the game. 

The Hattiesburg native went 7-for-7 through the air for 82 yards and 53 on the ground with three touches.

Ole Miss’ stable of running backs is led by senior Scottie Phillips. He has rushed the ball for 362 yards on 85 touches in four games. Freshman Jerrion Ealy is right behind him with 129 yards on the ground in 29 attempts.

Alabama is 4-0 on the season (1-0 SEC) and is ranked No. 2 in both the AP and Coaches polls this week. The Crimson Tide has won every game by at least 24 points, including a 47-23 win over South Carolina to open up SEC play two weeks ago. The Crimson Tide’s No. 2 ranking in this week’s Associated Press Top 25 marks the 59th consecutive AP poll in which Alabama has been ranked in the top-five. That stretch of top-five rankings is the longest streak in the poll’s history, surpassing the previous record of 54 straight weeks set by Miami from Oct. 8, 2000, through Oct. 26, 2003. The Crimson Tide has scored 42 or more points in every game this season.

The Alabama offense is led by reigning Walter Camp Player of the Year and the Maxwell Award winner QB Tua Tagovailoa. Tagovailoa ranks second in the SEC and No. 9 in the NCAA with 325.0 yards passing per game with an SEC-high 17 touchdowns and no interceptions. Running back Najee Harris is Alabama’s leading rusher with 266 yards and one TD, averaging 5.9 yards per touch. Wide receiver Jerry Jeudy is second in the SEC with 101.0 receiving yards per game.

“(Alabama has) one of the best quarterbacks in the country, three of the best receivers in the country, maybe four, and obviously a good running back. They are just very talented,” head coach Matt Luke said.

The Tide has limited opponents to just 10.8 points per game, including just 189.0 yards through the air. Anfernee Jennings ranks fourth in the SEC with 0.75 sacks per game.

Saturday will be the 67th all-time meeting between the two schools. Alabama holds a 50-10-2 advantage in the series. The original series record is 54-10-2 with both teams having wins taken away due to NCAA rulings.

Fans can watch all of the action of this SEC west tilt at 2:30 p.m. on CBS or listen to the call on the Ole Miss Radio Network.

Adam Brown
Adam Brown
Sports Editor

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