Ole Miss took care of business against Louisiana-Lafayette on Saturday, mopping up a 50-22 victory over the Ragin’ Cajuns and in the process quietly crawling back to .500 on the season.
Jordan Ta’amu marched the Rebs down the field on the team’s opening drive, going three-for-three for 61 yards and a finalizing 37-yard touchdown pass to DeMarkus Lodge. On ULL’s ensuing drive, Ole Miss’ defense bent slightly, but Taylor Polk saved the day with a timely sack around midfield to force a punt. Yes, you read that right.
After 35 minutes of football, Ole Miss had gained 375 passing yards (521 yards total), six touchdowns, and a field goal. The Rebs hadn’t turned the ball over, either.
From there the Rebs were able to sit on ULL — something they haven’t been able to do all that often this season — and enforce their will for the season’s fifth win.
Does Ole Miss have a quarterback battle in the works?
Ta’amu completed his first nine passes. He was 30-of-41 last week against Kentucky, which nets a 77 percent completion rate, the highest in Ole Miss history for a quarterback throwing more than 40 passes.
Further, his calm and courage under fire cannot be overstated. He was responsible for all five of the team’s touchdowns in the first half, and his decision making is quick and effective. Where Shea Patterson felt squirrelly and uneasy at times, and where Shea came to Ole Miss abreast a considerable wave of hype, Ta’amu has quietly stepped in to lead an offense that remains every bit as potent — if not more so and more explosive.
This type of game was needed in the buildup to Texas A&M and Mississippi State.
The offense was balanced, despite Brown having no less than 12 catches in the first half alone. Jordan Wilkins ran well all afternoon, even though he’s apparently dealing with an ankle or foot issue. Hopefully he can get that thing tuned up and continue to succeed as the Rebs moves into the closing pair of games.
At any rate, the opportunity for the team to more or less run their offense and get rung up on defense once more before these last two contests is a great help. Ta’amu needed one more walk-through before returning to SEC West competition proper.
A.J. Brown killed a man.
Look at this filthy fake:
Lord almighty. Final line on the day: 14 receptions, 185 yards, two touchdowns. Is that good?