The running game returned with a bang for Ole Miss last week, but it comes with an asterisk of course. Rolling up 298 yards against a Sun Belt Conference team isn't quite the same as doing it in the SEC, which is where the Rebels have to do it from here on out.
There have been times this year when tailback Brandon Bolden has bounced outside for extra yards by necessity because there's been no hole where the play was designed to go.
That was much less the case against La.-Lafayette, Ole Miss coach Houston Nutt said. Bolden ran for 136 yards and two touchdowns on 18 carries, free lancing for a lot of those yards. Enrique Davis bounced a little bit too en route to a career-high 116 yards.
"Sometimes the bounced when they didn't need to bounce," Nutt said. "Brandon has such quickness and has a knack for doing that, but he's not going to be able to do it against the Tennessees and LSUs of the world."
If Nutt had continued on he would have said because the Tennessees and LSUs of the world have quickness too.
Nutt gave a favorable review of his OL interior, saying they got a "hat on a hat" for the most part, "created ties and got some push."
Here's a look at Bolden's rushing yards in non-SEC and SEC games
Jax State - 17-104
Tulane - 7-32
Fresno State - 19-228
ULL - 18-136
Yards per game: 125
Vandy - 10-46
UK - 23-108
Alabama - 10-32
Arkansas - 11-9
Auburn - 6-32
Totals: 60 - 227
Yards per game: 45.4
The Rebels need their running game moving forward, not just nipping at the outside with Jeff Scott, whose availability may be limited by a pulled calf muscle.
If Ole Miss can run between the tackles at Tennessee - which is giving up 185.4 rushing yards a game to SEC opponents - it will be in good position to win the game.