By Parrish Alford/NEMS Daily Journal
The offense had two long, impressive drives against what is probably the best defense in the nation.
The defense was physical up front, a noticable imrpovement from the Texas game.
Receivers Vince Sanders and Ja-Mes Logan had some nice catches when Alabama clamped down on Donte Moncrief.
The three interceptions were drive-killers and contributed to the great field position Alabama had in the first half when it put the game away with 27 points.
When an opponent committed itself to taking Moncrief out of the game, the Rebels were unable to get him the ball.
Keys To Victory
Evaluating the keys to victory in Saturday’s GameDay section.
1. Protect the football. It wasn’t six fumbles like it was at Tulane, but it was three interceptions. It seems that it’s something every week, and the Rebels cant seem to shae the turnover bug.
That will cost them in games down the road if they don’t get it corrected.
2. Find the football. This wasn’t quite so evident as most of Alabama’s completions were across the middle or on screens.
It did come into play, though, A.J. McCarron’s second touchdown pass to Amari Cooper when Ole Miss safety Frank Crawford didn’t turn around soon enough to find the ball and make a play.
The touchdown came on third down, and an incompletion would have forced another field goal attempt for the Tide.
3. Be Quick. The Rebels were much better here on the defensive line, getting seven tackles for loss compared to just one in the Texas game.
Denzel Nkemdiche. The redshirst freshman linebacker had 11 tackles, a sack, three tackles for loss and two forced fumbles.
There were positives to be taken from a game that no one expected Ole Miss to win. The physical play along the defensive line needs to become a trend and not an isolated incident. If so, it will give the Rebels a big lift in two crucial home games against Texas Aamp&M and Auburn, chances to break what is now a 15-game SEC losing streak.