OXFORD – Stretched thin at defensive end already without C.J. Johnson, one of its top producers, Ole Miss got more bad news when freshman Robert Nkemdiche pulled a hamstring while chasing Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel in the first half.
It was announced in the press box that Nkemdiche’s return was “questionable,” but Nkemdiche did not return.
Defensive linemen Issac Gross and Woodrow Hamilton also left the field with injuries.
Linebacker Serderius Bryant left the field on a stretcher with less than 4 minutes to play.
No status report was available for Bryant or any of the other injured players.
Andrew Ritter’s 42-yard field goal with 4:12 left in the second quarter made it a 14-10 game.
It was Ritter’s fifth-straight make, his fourth of 40-plus yards in that span.
The senior from Jackson was redshirted last year and groomed to replace a very reliable Bryson Rose. He went into the game 6-for-8 on the season.
1,049 – The two teams combined for 1,049 yards.
Manziel came back from a tweaked knee to guide the Aggies 75 yards in five plays, the score coming on an 18-yard run by Trey Williams.
The drive answered a 70-yard touchdown connection from Bo Wallace to Vince Sanders who was wide open yards behind the A&M secondary, a score that had tied the game at 7.
The Rebels play the second of six-straight home games against LSU, a 17-6 winner over Florida Saturday. Kickoff is 6 p.m.
The Rebels were called for targeting twice during the game. They endured the penalties, but Trae Elston and Keith Lewis were both allowed to remain in the game after the plays were reviewed. … Freshman Derrick Jones started at cornerback but did not play most of the game. … Texas A&M’s big 6-foot-5 receiver Mike Evans was not a huge factor until late in the game when he took a dump pass 26 yards to the 6 and set up Manziel’s 6-yard scramble for the tying score with 3:07 left.