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Phil Longo praises Jordan Ta’amu’s calmness on final drive against Kentucky

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Longo’s replacement quarterback showed calm under fire.

NCAA Football: Mississippi at Kentucky
Not a fumble.
Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports

Ole Miss needed all 60 minutes to beat a Kentucky team that harried the Rebs all night on Saturday, but in the end Matt Luke’s outfit pulled off a game-winning, two-minute nine-second drive that sealed a 37-34 win. Jordan Ta’amu was masterful in the Ole Miss two-minute drill, and for his efforts he came away the hero on Saturday night.

We asked the two-minute drill question on Twitter, and Ta’amu answered with 6-of-8 passing, 45 yards and the game-winning touchdown pass. He also had a neat little 10-yard scamper that saved the team’s bacon and got them inside the 10. That particular play ended with a free timeout, as Ta’amu’s landing was reviewed for a fumble. It wasn’t and they spiked to reset and get their package ready.

It was an impressive performance for a replacement QB who’s slowly cooking and playing serviceable ball on a team that lacks a defense.

The Ole Miss Spirit’s Ben Garrett caught up with offensive coordinator Phil Longo after Saturday’s win and asked about J-Tam’s calmness, and here’s what Longo had to say, in part:

Jordan’s calmness from the time he gets up to the time he goes to bed impresses me, because he’s like this [flat hand motion] the whole time.

He also mentioned that they sent him out there with three basic play sets and that it was Ta’amu’s task to read the react as he saw fit. Obviously that worked, for their troubles the Rebs are now 4-5 (2-5 SEC), and just one win away from matching last year’s win total.

And next Saturday they play Louisiana-Lafayette.