We’re headed to late October and Ole Miss still has not allowed more than 20 points in a game this season.
The third-ranked Rebels’ defense continued its claim as the best unit on either side of the ball in college football, manhandling an overmatched Tennessee squad to the tune of a 34-3 win in Oxford.
The Volunteers actually opened the scoring at the 12:40 mark of the second quarter with a 27-yard field goal by Aaron Medley. Needless to say, the highlights began and ended there for Tennessee.
Dave Wommack’s defense victimized Tennessee for seven sacks, three interceptions, one fumble recovery, minus-two rushing yards, just three third-down conversions in 16 tries, only 10 first downs and 189 yards of total offense. Justin Worley completed 19-of-34 passes for 191 yards and those three interceptions, while Jalen Hurd managed 40 rushing yards on 13 carries. No Tennessee possession lasted more than nine plays, and seven of its 15 touches went three-and-out. The Volunteers punted nine times.
To put Ole Miss’ dominance in perspective: Tennessee’s only scoring drive started in Rebel territory. Every one of the other 14 possessions started in Volunteer territory, and only two crossed midfield.
Bo Wallace put Ole Miss on the board with 5:08 remaining in the second quarter what turned out to be the winning score, a 38-yard toss to Vince Sanders. He also found Evan Engram for a 28-yard scoring strike late in the third quarter to truly put the game away at 24-3, and hit 13-of-28 passes for 199 yards with 33 additional rushing yards on the night.
Seven Rebels combined to rush 47 times for 180 yards and three scores, led by Jaylen Walton’s 10 rushes for 60 yards and one touchdown, a seven-yarder with 1:51 to play before halftime.
The win pushes Ole Miss to 7-0 (4-0 SEC) with a trip to LSU waiting Saturday, while Tennessee falls to 3-4 (0-3) SEC with a visit to – gulp – Alabama next week.