Statistical Preview: Ole Miss Rebels vs. Alabama Crimson Tide

John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

What do the numbers say about this Saturday's matchup?

[Now that we've got a decent-but-not-good-and-far-from-great sample size of games to work with, Fit4LifeLLC and I - but mostly him - will work to give you a look at the numbers heading into our opponents for the remainder of the season. This week, we begin with the Alabama Crimson Tide.]

Below you will find a breakdown of statistics for the Alabama Crimson Tide and Ole Miss Rebels matchup for this Saturday at 6:30pm in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. From a purely statistical standpoint, it is really easy to like the Rebels' chances, as they have an edge in several categories both on an individual and team basis.

That said, strength of schedule, coaching, and simple raw talent are all in favor the #1 Crimson Tide. There's a reason Vegas has them as double-digit favorites at this point.

The 2013 Crimson Tide obviously have a loaded roster and much more depth than the Rebels at this point of the Hugh Freeze "journey." (He likes that word. I don't know why.) Alabama seems to be searching for some consistency however, having lost a ton of talent due to graduation and early entries in last years draft. Make no mistake, the Tide has tons of talent all over the field, but they have seemed vulnerable so far on the offensive line and in the secondary - two areas that are usually very strong trademarks of any Nick Saban coached team.

The Tide has more than a few players this year that are capable of making big plays. Receivers Kevin Norwood, Kenny Bell DeAndrew White, Amari Cooper and Christion Jones are all very dangerous weapons, and QB AJ McCarron has shown the ability to hit the deep ball with accuracy. If he has time, he'll make the throw. Alabama has had some trouble this year (by their standards, at least) running the ball.  So it will be interesting to see if the Tide comes out and tries to run first/pass second, or uses play action to get the Rebels to bite and open up some passing lanes before coming back to lean on the run and seal a win (If you'll recall, this was the formula for the National Championship Game in 2011 against LSU).

As for good news, the Rebels will appear to be healthier going into the Alabama game than at any point this season. Expect to see wide receiver Vince Sanders and cornerback Charles Sawyer back this week. Others that appear to be as healthy as they have been all year are nose tackle Issac Gross, defensive end CJ Johnson, offensive guard Patrick Junen, offensive tackle Emmanuel McCray, offensive tackle Pierce Burton and cornerback Senquez Golson.  All-SEC linebacker Denzel Nkemdiche is questionable as he recovers from a meniscus tear so we're not sure if we will see much of him on Saturday.

All in all, I do see the Rebels beating the spread in this one. The line has been as high as 16.5, but if the Rebs can limit big plays, this could come down to a one-touchdown game.

For Ole Miss to pull the upset and win they must:

  1. Win 1st down
  2. Limit Turnovers
  3. Tempo-Tempo-Tempo

Okay, on to the stats.

Alabama

Offensive Leaders

Passing

Interceptions

Comp %

Yards

TD

Rating

AJ McCarron

2

64.1

702

6

159.96

Blake Sims

0

50.0

14

1

273.80

Rushing

Attempts

Yards

Average

TD

Long

TJ Yeldon

49

273

5.6

2

38

Kenyan Drake

10

53

5.3

2

16

Jalston Fowler

12

48

4.0

0

15

Altee Tenpenny

8

31

3.9

0

20

Alabama Receiving

Name

Receptions

Yards

Average

TD

Long

Christion Jones

12

149

12.4

1

38

DeAndrew White

8

161

20.1

2

44

OJ Howard

6

106

17.7

0

27

Amari Cooper

6

72

12.0

0

21

Brian Vogler

5

37

7.4

0

12

Kevin Norwood

4

63

15.8

1

22

Alabama - Offense/Defense

Scoring

115

58

First Downs

58

51

Rushing Yardage

396

368

Passing Yardage

716

751

Total Offense

1112

1119

Total Plays

176

194

Average Per Play

6.3

5.8

Ole Miss - Offense/Defense

Scoring

114

71

First Downs

81

56

Rushing Yardage

750

343

Passing Yardage

720

655

Total Offense

1470

998

Total Plays

238

207

Average Per Play

6.2

4.8

Misc Statistical Comparisons

OM

UA

Turnovers

4

3

Punting

9 for a 41.4 net avg.

17 for a 40.4 net avg.

Time of Possession (avg)

28:02

31:32

3rd Conversion %

51%

33%

4th Conversion %

62%

100%

Sacks

4 for 19 yards lost

3 for 14 yards lost

FG

3/5

1/2

Red Zone Scoring

13/14 (93%)

6/7 (86%)

Penalties

5 for 46 yards/game

6 for 48 yards/game

Other stats of note:

* 25-1 Alabama's all time record vs the Rebels in Tuscaloosa (Ole Miss lone victory coming on October 8th, 1988)

* 46-9-2 Alabama leads the all time series

* Alabama has outscored opponents in the 2nd quarter this year 45-3

* Ole Miss has been outscored in the 2nd quarter this year 37-17

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