Ole Miss football is coming off their bye week and will be back in action this Saturday as they host the South Carolina Gamecocks.
Ole Miss football (5-3, 1-3) will be back in action this Saturday when they host the South Carolina Gamecocks (4-3, 3-3) in Oxford. The Ole Miss Rebels are coming into the matchup off their bye week which followed the Rebels 31-16 loss to the Auburn Tigers. South Carolina enters Saturdays contest coming off a 27-24 win over SEC East foe Tennessee.
The matchup this Saturday will be the Rebels first of two cross-divisional games within the last four games of the 2018 college football season. South Carolina comes to Oxford with coach Will Muschamp at the helm and have SEC wins over Missouri, Vanderbilt and Tennessee. Muschamp and the Gamecocks are loaded with talent on both sides of the ball and are led by a very capable quarterback in Jake Bentley. We’ll take a closer look at the Gamecocks.
Gamecocks On Offense
Ole Miss Rebels
So far this season Jake Bentley has played good enough to win games despite not having overwhelming numbers. Bentley has completed 112 of 183 attempts for 1,303 yards and 11 TDs while throwing 8 INTs and being sacked 7 times. Bentley also has 33 carries for 120 yards on the ground.
The Gamecocks receiving corps is led by junior wide receiver Bryan Edwards who has 31 receptions for 447 yards and 5 TDs. Senior Deebo Samuel has had 36 receptions for 390 yards and also has 5 TDs. Sophomore Shi Smith has 21 receptions for 314 yards and 2 TDs.
The South Carolina ground game is led by junior Rico Dowdle who has 97 carries for 491 yards and 3 TDs. Junior Ty’Son Williams also plays into the running game with 59 carries for 289 yards and also has 3 TDs.
Gamecocks On Defense
It is no big secret Will Muschamp has a pretty good defense. So far in 2018 thru seven games the Gamecocks have allowed 2,621 yards giving up 1,219 yards on the ground and 1,402 yards thru the air. Of course, South Carolina has talented players on the defensive side of the ball. Junior defensive lineman Javon Kinlaw leads the Gamecocks in sacks with 3 so far. Kinlaw also has 24 tackles.
Senior defensive back Rashad Fenton leads the Gamecocks in the secondary with 3 interceptions and has 17 tackles. Junior linebacker TJ Brunson leads South Carolina with 49 tackles and also has 1 sack for the Gamecocks. The Gamecocks defense is gritty and find ways to make big stops when needed.
After having the bye week to work on the red-zone issues from the Auburn game the Rebels can be expected to open up the playbook and we should see improvements. Naturally we can expect to see Phil Longo look to Scottie Phillips to establish a running game against a the Gamecocks who allow 175 yards rushing per game. Of course, we can expect Rebels QB Jordan Ta’amu and the NWO to have huge days.
On the defensive side of the ball we can expect Wesley McGriff and the Rebels to try to stop the Gamecocks on the ground and force Jake Bentley to throw the ball. The Rebels have had two weeks to get healthier and fix coverage problems so we can expect to see improvements on the defensive side of the ball this Saturday.
This will not be easy for the Rebels but they can get the win if they have truly corrected the issues which hindered them against Auburn. OHT has this game falling in favor of the Rebels on a special teams ending. OHT hopes it is better than the 27-24 win we predict but the Rebels will have to play clean football to get the W. Kickoff from Oxford for the Saturday matchup between the Rebels and the Gamecocks is set for 11am and the game will be televised via the SEC Network. Good luck to coach Matt Luke and the Rebels. Hotty Toddy!