FINAL: Ole Miss 30, Arkansas 27


We are bouncing along I-630 right now headed back. The win was the Rebels’ first on the SEC road since beating Vanderbilt 23-7 in October of 2009.

Here’s what Hugh Freeze had to say postgame.



Here’s the Ole Miss on-field celebration after Bryson Rose knocked through 31-yard game-winning field goal.


Some final numbers that caught my eye.

Ole Miss gave up 464 yards, but Arkansas reached the red zone just four times, and two of those drives ended with field goals.

Against a very good quarterback, an Ole Miss secondary that had three freshmen playing extensively had 10 pass break-ups to Arkansas three.

The Rebels’ trend of strong defense in the third quarter continued. Arkansas did not score in the third quarter, and in three SEC games, the Rebels have allowed only three third-quarter points.

Arkansas tailback Dennis Johnson had 160 yards and a touchdown on 15 carries against Ole Miss in Oxford last year. He duplicated that effort today with 161 yards and a touchdown on 27 carries. Unlike last year, the Rebels kept Johnson from breaking really long run. His long gain of the day was 21 yards.

Ole Miss linebacker Denzel Nkemdiche called Johnson a great back and said he was just really hard to tackle.

Johnson did a great job of bouncing the play outside when the Rebels had things bunched up in the hole, and that speaks to a lack of speed on the Ole Miss defense that Freeze and his staff are trying to address in recruiting.

Freshman defensive back Mike Hilton responded to his concussion late in the Auburn game with six tackles and two pass break-ups, another impressive day for Hilton.

Freeze called Arkansas’ defensive line “dominant.” After back-to-back 100-yard rushing games, Jeff Scott was held in check with 50 net yards on 21 carries, an average rush of 2.4 yards. Scott contributed in other ways, including the big catch on the winning field goal drive.


Quite a turnaround from the early first quarter when the Hogs looked dominant on two drives.

Bo Wallace has two turnovers, but the Razorbacks have scored on neither. The Rebels have played pretty good defense from the late first quarter on. They’ve missed several chances at interceptions, though they did get one, as Charles Sawyer’s pick at the 5 ended a Razorbacks scoring threat.

Sawyer also has a blocked punt, plus the return, and a PBU. If he has a second half like the first he would be a strong SEC POW candidate.

Wallace has been good when he’s held the ball. He’s 14-for-19 passing, 135 yards, a TD to Vince Sanders, Sanders first of the year, and the pick, which was a short-armed throw with a guy in his face.

The Rebels have been outgained 292-213. Arkansas’ scoring drives have been 85 and 95 yards. On the latter, which gave the Hogs a 17-14 lead, the Rebels gave up a third-and-9 from the Arkansas 6 with a 17-yard run and a fourth-and-3 on the Ole Miss end, to the tight end Chris Gragg. He’s a big weapon in the Arkansas offense. This is Gragg’s first game back from injury, and he limped off after the fourth-down play. No word on his status.

Ole Miss standouts: Jeff Scott, 11 carries, 45 yards, TD; Barry Brunetti, 2 carries, 2 yards, TD; Randall Mackey (at receiver), 5 catches, 64 yards; Vince Sanders; 5 catches, 40 yards TD.

Arkansas QB Tyler Wilson is 15-for-28, 196 yards, 2 TD, 1 INT. RB Dennis Johnson, who went over the 100-yard mark against Ole Miss last year, 13 carries, 71 yards.


The Rebels and Razorbacks are on the field for warm-ups. Starting line-ups are being announced. The Arkansas line-up will not include Brandon Mitchell, the team’s third-leading receiver, who has been suspended for violation of team rules the school announced moments ago.

Mitchell has only 15 catches this season. It would be of greater impact if Cobi Hamilton (46 catches, 107.7 ypg) had run afoul of team rules.

The Rebels are in their road white shirts with traditional gray. Arkansas is in the mod looking charcoal gray, cardinal red mix.

Here’s War Memorial a few minutes ago.

I will have updates on Twitter throughout the game and will be back here at halftime and after the game.

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.

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  • Good win for Rebs. Hugh needs to work on his conservative play calling in the last ten minutes of game. I suppose he’s learning as well. Almost got us a second time. We are learning to win so why not give it a shot. It cost us the A & M game but that’s all part of the process. He’ll get it right. Bottom line is we have found a football coach and the players are responding. I have to say I’m amazed.

  • Hotty Toddy…state of Mississippi looking a little more cardinal and navy today….

  • I agree with Mr. Brown, the game was far closer than it needed to be, simply because of the play calling. It seemed like we were content with a 1 score lead, and that costs you time and time again in this league. We have to go for the juggular, IMO. I say we play UGA in Athens on CBS at 2:30 PM CDT – with the 2 wins by UM and UGA, and the loss by MSU, if they were looking for some other combination to put on CBS, I’ll never know. We’ll see. Need to bring our A-game to Athens, and clean up some of the 2nd half blocking assignments that were flat out missed. Really not sure why we keep switching QB’s….what more does Bo Wallace need to prove? Find another way to get Barry on the field, just as Mackey is being utilized all over the field….to our advantage. All in all, a great football game, with an even better outcome! Love being wrong when it feels like it feels today… least about this one. Yours truly – Debbie D…

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