Ole Miss football was back in action Saturday when they faced the Texas A&M Aggies but the Rebels fell 38-24 and picked up their 5th loss of 2018.
Ole Miss football (5-5, 1-5) was back on the road this past weekend in College Station to take on the Texas A&M Aggies (6-5, 4-3). Coach Matt Luke and the Rebels were looking to get back on track with a strong game and pick up their 6th win of 2018. However, the Aggies were too much and the Rebels picked up their 5th loss of the season.
Texas A&M got on the board first and at the end of the 1st quarter the Aggies led 7-0. Ole Miss didn’t wait long and tied the game 7-7 on a 44-yard TD pass from Jordan Ta’amu to DaMarkus Lodge. Later in the second quarter the Rebels struck again with a 1-yard TD run by Ta’amu and took a 14-7 lead. The Aggies tied the game at 14-14 which was the score at the half.
The Rebels wasted no time getting back on top early in the second half. Zedrick Woods went 96-yards on a scoop and score to give Ole Miss the 21-14 lead. The Aggies answered with a TD late in the 3rd to tie the game 21-21 which is how the 4th quarter began. A&M scored a FG and a TD to take the 31-21 lead. Luke Logan connected on a 24-yard FG to cut the Aggie lead to 31-24 but the Rebels couldn’t find the end-zone. TAMU added a late score to extend the lead to 38-24 which was ultimately the final score. Lets look at the Rebels numbers.
Rebels Offensive Numbers
Ole Miss Rebels
The Rebels offense put up 440 yards of total offense with 373 yards coming thru the air and 67 yards coming on the ground. QB Jordan Ta’amu went 22 of 35 for 373 yards and 1 TD and also had 9 carries for -6 yards and 1 TD on the ground.
All-American WR AJ Brown led all Rebels receiving with 6 receptions for 127 yards while senior DaMarkus Lodge also had 6 receptions for 122 yards and 1 TD. Tight-end Octavious Cooley had 3 receptions for 66 yards while freshman WR Elijah Moore had 5 receptions for 40 yards.
Prior to exiting the game with an ankle injury Scottie Phillips had 3 carries for 4 yards. True freshman Isaiah Woullard picked up the slack with the bulk of the carries. Woullard had 16 carries for 64 yards while he also had 1 catch for 10 yards. Tight-end Jason Pellerin had 1 carry for 3 yards and Eric Swinney had 1 carry for 2 yards and 1 reception for 8 yards.
Rebels Defensive Numbers
Defensively the Rebels allowed 502 yards of Aggies total offense. The Rebels allowed just 236 yards thru the air but gave up 266 yards on the ground. Leading all Rebels on defense was LB Mohamed Sanogo who had 16 total tackles and 1 TFL. DE Josiah Coatney had 9 total tackles while LB Willie Hibbler had 7 total tackles 2 TFL and 1 forced fumble. DB Zedrick Woods had 6 total tackles and the biggest defensive play of the day which was a 96-yard fumble recovery and return for the TD. Senior DB Ken Webster had 3 total tackles and the only interception on the day.
Everybody watching the game could see Jordan Ta’amu was hobbled in his normal run game but played a really good game considering he was doing it on a bad ankle. We watched as Jordan thrived in the passing game and once again put up incredible numbers against a really good Aggie defense. We also watched the NWO put up incredible numbers once again.
Of course, losing our most productive RB in Scottie Phillips had a negative impact on the run game. However, Isaiah Woullard stepped up and ran the bulk of carries for the Rebels and carried a 4.0 YPC average which is better than what many Rebels fans expected.
When it comes to the defense we have seen the same thing so many consecutive weeks now there is really no expounding on the lack thereof. However, this defense has seen a numbers of players go down which hindered them greatly. Naturally not everyone agrees when it comes to the defense.
There are some Ole Miss football fans who blame the problems on coaching and some on the talent level. Are these issues? Yes of course. However, the talent issue is more of a depth issue than a lack of talent. None of these players would be where they are if there was a lack of talent. When you see pass breakups, interceptions and forced fumbles the talent is obviously there. The problem seems to be more of consistency and sadly falls on the coaching staff.
My biggest observation for the game was this. When the game kicked off at Kyle Field in College Station there were over a 102K Aggies there. Both teams were fighting for their 6th win. If the game had been in Oxford the attendance would have been terrible with empty stands. Don’t give up on this team while there are still 2 games left in 2018. Both Vandy and Miss State are very winnable games. The Rebels begin this week on the road against Vanderbilt. Hotty Toddy!