REWIND: Auburn 51, Ole Miss 31

Thumbs up
– The Rebels moved the ball and scored against Auburn. Jeremiah Masoli completed 60 percent of his passes, with good catches downfield.
Freshman running back Jeff Scott had a big day.
Thumbs down
– Defensively, the Rebels could not slow Auburn at all. In the first half – when the game was decided – Auburn had seven possessions. Six resulted in scores, four of them touchdowns.
Ole Miss was unable to score anything after gaining a fumble in the Auburn red zone, instead turned it back to the Tigers two plays later.
Keys to victory review
– Evaluating the keys to victory in Saturday’s GameDay section:
1. Slow Cam Newton: The Rebels slowed parts of Cam Newton. They were effective against him in the run game in the first half. In the second half he got free a couple of times, but he never dominated with his feet.
It was a different story with his arm, however, as he completed 75 percent of his pass attempts.
2. Find Fairley: The Rebels found Auburn defensive tackle Nick Fairley, and wisely avoided him. As a result, Ole Miss was able to get some things going in the run game by going wide.
Ole Miss totaled 407 yards and 31 points and did not let Fairley dictate what it did on offense.
3. Avoid big plays: Again, big plays hurt the Rebels. Among Arkansas’ two scores last week – in a game the Rebels lost by 14 points – were a 71-yard run and a 97-yard punt return.
This week the Rebels lost by 20 points and gave up a 68-yard run and a 95-yard kick return. Not a recipe for success.
– Jeff Scott. The freshman running back had 134 yards and a touchdown on nine carries, scoring on an 83-yard run on the Rebels first possession.
Bottom line
– Eight games into the season personalities have been clearly established. Ole Miss is going to give up yards and points, so the offense can’t be average. It has to be very good and has to outscore opponents. The Rebels have completed the “A Team” portion of their schedule without pulling off an upset. They must win three of their last four to avoid a losing season.

NEMS Daily Journal

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