Ole Miss football was expected to win big and they did just that on their way to a record-setting day against the Mercer Bears in the opening week of the college football season. Quarterback Jaxson Dart and wide receiver Tre Harris both had impressive performances in the 73-7 romping of the Bears.
If you are an Ole Miss football fan, week one of the season went precisely how you’d want it to go. Playing an FCS opponent at home and ranked No. 22 in the country, they took care of business, made light work of an outmatched opponent, and posted a basketball-like score of 73 points on offense.
Lane Kiffin’s offense was hitting on all cylinders no matter who was in the lineup. The new-look defense under new defensive coordinator Pete Golding had a day as well. The Rebels gave up a quick score early in the first quarter when Mercer’s quarterback scampered for a 75-yard touchdown but the Ole Miss defense tightened up after the big play and held the Bears scoreless for the rest of the contest.
After battling with Spencer Sanders all offseason for the starting job Jaxson Dart got the start at quarterback. Dart went 18-for-23 for 334 yards and four touchdowns. Dart posted an impressive stat line but the most impressive performance of the day goes to wide receiver Tre Harris. Harris was a transfer this offseason from Louisiana Tech. He finished the day with six catches for 133 yards and four touchdowns of his own which set the Ole Miss single-game school record for touchdowns.
Wide receiver Jordan Watkins had an impressive day as well with six catches for 111 yards. The Rebels emptied the bench as 13 different players had a reception on the day. Star running back Quinshon Judkins added to the mix with13 carries for 60 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
Once the game was practically out of reach backup quarterbacks Spencer Sanders and Walker Howard would both make an appearance. Sanders went 8-for-14 passing for 134 yards and two touchdowns and Howard went 3-for-4 for 56 yards.
With all quarterbacks combined, they set a single-game team passing record for Ole Miss football with 524 yards. The previous record was 517 yards set against Louisiana Monroe in 2018.