Tuesday, November 29, 2022

Lane Kiffin (almost) pulled off a win against former boss Nick Saban

By Adam Brown
Sports Editor

Ole Miss head Coach Lane Kiffin on the side lines. Photo by Joshua McCoy / Ole Miss Sports

Ole Miss and No. 2 Alabama put on an offensive firework display inside the Vaught on Saturday night. The scoreboard was lit up for over the century mark.

The Rebels fell short of knocking off the Crimson Tide 63-48 in Head Coach Lane Kiffin’s first matchup against Coach Nick Saban since working under him as the offensive coordinator for the Tide.

“Most points in the history of an SEC regulation game, especially against coach Saban and that defense,” Kiffin said. “You don’t get many chances like that to beat the No. 1 team in the country.”

Both teams had trouble slowing the other down during the course of the contest as over 1,300 yards of total offense was recorded into the record books. The Crimson Tide still runs the same pass first style of play that Kiffin was brought to Tuscalossa in 2014 to install.

“I was saying it today, I wish Steve Sarkisian wasn’t over there and they were running the old Alabama offense,” Kiffin said. I was thinking I played coach twice the first time was 12-10 (at Tennessee) with field goals and only one touchdown.”

Against the Crimson Tide, the Rebels had a great running game with Snoop Conner and Jerrion Ealy as they both recorded over 100 yards on the ground and two touchdowns apiece.

“I was kind of surprised by that, as we have struggled to run the ball,” Kiffin said. “Nobody runs the ball well on these guys. That was good to see. I was surprised at halftime saying we need to run the ball more. Everyone did a good job, and the backs did a good job.”

Kiffin said that he spoke post-game with Saban. Kiffin described the relationship between the two earlier this week on ESPN’s GameDay as “like an ex”.

“I told him you got a great team, and go win it all,” Kiffin said. 

Ole Miss hits the road next Saturday as they travel to Fayetteville to take on the Arkansas Razorbacks. Kickoff is slated for 2:30 p.m.