Predictions Anyone?

Welcome to Prediction Thursday. I am on the road today checking on home folks before heading down to New Orleans tomorrow.

The hopeful among most Ole Miss fans looked at the 2012 schedule and immediately could see a path to 3-1.

The Rebels are almost there. What comes to mind this week as the Rebels visit Tulane is the well-used phrase, “That’s why you play the game.” You hear that sort of thing after big upsets, and the Rebels are the big favorites in New Orleans.

Ole Miss leads its series with Tulane 42-28 and won the last meeting 27-13 with Jeremiah Masoli at QB in 2010 at the Superdome in New Orleans.

Under first-year coach Curtis Johnson, who coached receivers with the Saints last year, Tulane – which has had a winning season just twice in the 2000s — has shown no early signs of rapid improvement. Johnson has had to deal with off-season issues and injuries, and while the Green Wave has had two weeks to prepare for the Rebels, this game still has the look of a third win for Ole Miss, perhaps in a big way.

The biggest injury has been to senior safety Devon Walker, who suffered a cervical spine fracture on the last play of the first half at Tulsa. Ole Miss coach Hugh Freeze has used that injury to point to adversity and distraction for Tulane then, but Walker’s injury came on the last play of the first half, and the Green Wave already trailed 35-3.

Tulane has also dealt with an injury to fifth-year senior Ryan Griffin at quarterback. He missed the second half of the Tulsa game with a shoulder problem. His status for Saturday remains unclear, and signs point to freshman Devin Powell, who made his college debut when he relieved Griffin in the second half at Tulsa. Powell guided the Green Wave to its only touchdown in the game, which by the way could make Ole Miss folks a tad nervous since it came on a 66-yard pass.

The Green Wave has been terrible on the ground without injured running back Orleans Darkwa, averaging just 7.5 yards a game on the ground. Not surprisingly, that ranks Tulane last in the nation in rushing offense. There’s some sack yardage figured in there, but you have to almost try to average just 7.5 yards on the ground. That’s not all about running backs. There are some line issues in there. And you have to want to run the ball too. The Green Wave has attempted just 15 non-quarterback runs through two games.

Freeze likes the idea of getting on the road after a disappointing loss, getting alone with your players and regaining focus. This will be the first road game for many Ole Miss players, but the home crowd feel they’ll have from Ole Miss fans in the Superdome, where Tulane receives very little support, will hardly prepare them for the road atmosphere the following week at Alabama.

The bottom line is Tulane is rebuilding just like Ole Miss but with less talent.

Ole Miss put up 31 points – three touchdowns by the offense – against a much better Texas defense. You would think the Rebels could put up points against Tulane. Three interceptions thrown by Bo Wallace marked the first time he’s had real turnover struggles in a game and were reminiscent of the problems he had in August practice.

I think he’ll be OK against Tulane, but that does make one wonder how Wallace will react the next time he faces Texas speed, because he will face it again.

For now, Wallace and the Rebels should handle the Tulane speed and improve to 3-1.

Prediction: Ole Miss 39, Tulane 20

Denham Springs, La., native, Mississippian since 1989 with a stop in Meridian before arriving in Tupelo. Daily Journal beat writer since 1996, covering Ole Miss since 2002. Proud Northeast Louisiana alum. Follow me on Twitter @parrishalford and listen to John Davis and myself daily with The Ole Miss Beat on Rebel Sports Radio.

Posted in Football
  • Rebels 35
    Green Wave 21

  • RebFan1

    Rebels 45
    G-Wave 17

  • Ole Miss 52
    Tulane 21

    Channing Ward gets his first sack. Charles Sawyer gets a pick 6. Moncrief gets another 50+ yard TD. Brunetti comes in during the 3rd Quarter and plays the rest of the game, except for a few snaps for M Miller.

  • Rebs 38
    Wave 17

  • Parrish Alford

    Lot of specifics there Brian. I like the Channing Ward sack thing. I think that happens.

  • From my past memory of Ole Miss and Tulane games one can never rule out an upset. The Green Waves have pulled it off before, but don’t think they will do it here in this game. Coach Freeze got this Rebel team going and I think it with the best Offense in the SEC, so Rebels will win this one. I believe the Rebs will put 30 points or better on the score board and Rebel Defense holding Tulane to less than 21 points.

  • Ole Miss. 45

    Tulane. 10

  • ole miss 7
    tulane 0
    wouldnt that be totally opposite of ANY predictions.
    ole miss wins by 30 but allows too many points to be scored. but even if they dont allow many points, it wouldnt indicate much with the state of the tulane offense with injuries.

Parrish’s Twitter Feed

Meet the Writers

JD and Parrish

Want Email Updates? Warning... We Update Often

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 778 other subscribers