Ole Miss put a 54-21 beat down on Vanderbilt to claim its second win of the season on Halloween night.
The Rebels received the opening kickoff and went to work. The offense went 71 yards on 10 plays in three minutes and 19 seconds. Jeff Lebby called an efficient drive that allowed Matt Corral to make efficient throws without over-extending himself or forcing balls into difficult situations. He made all the right reads and found three different receivers.
Jerrion Ealy received the majority of the touches on the ground and Ole Miss ran two passes followed by two runs all the way down the field. Snoop Conner got his first snap at the goal line and punched it in from one-yard out. All systems were go and it didn’t stop for 60 minutes.
Vanderbilt is bad, and Ole Miss’ defense was trending upward last weekend, which made for a successful day on Saturday that started with a three-and-out.
Corral took back over after a great Commodore punt and drove 93 yards with ease. Elijah Moore highlighted the drive with a 39-yard completion over the middle and Kenny Yeboah capped it off with his fifth touchdown of the season. Lebby called for a touch pass to the big, athletic tight end and Corral dropped a dime in a bucket. It was a thing of beauty from top to bottom.
With a 14-0 lead to protect, D.J. Durkin and Chris Partridge’s group stepped up once again and forced Vanderbilt to punt on three plays. The punt went four yards. Four.
With great field position, the quick, efficient play continued and Corral found his top receiver for a 36-yard score. Moore ran a route that could have dislocated the defensive back’s hips
The Rebels went into the second quarter with a 21-0 lead that turned to 21-7 after the Commodores offense found some momentum and strung together a 93-yard scoring drive. Even a blind squirrel gets a nut every once in awhile, and the lack of talent on Ole Miss’ defense just couldn’t keep the momentum rolling.
It was no big deal and the offense answered with ease. Moore made four catches for 78 yards and capped it off with a tap-pass to the corner for six. There was not a single negative moment until Luke Logan missed the extra point and sent Rebel fans into a state of PTSD. That feeling didn’t last long, however, and it was followed by another solid defensive stop. Vanderbilt is bad.
Corral continued to cook and orchestrated another almost 90-yard drive that reached its crescendo when he completed his 19th consecutive pass attempt and broke Eli Manning’s school record for most consecutive completions.
Kiffin went for it on 4th-and-five at the Vanderbilt 33-yard-line (up 20 points) to keep the drive alive and Moore topped it off with his third touchdown of the night. He finished the first half with an astonishing 223 yards on 12 catches. His case for the Biletnikoff Award is pretty profound.
Ole Miss carried a 33-14 lead into the second half and kept the foot on the gas. The defense stepped up out of the gates and forced a punt. That gave the ball back to the Iceman, who was on fire. Corral completed all six of his pass attempts and found Dontario Drummond in the corner to palindrome the score at 41-14 after a successful two-point conversion.
The Commodore kick returner fumbled the proceeding kickoff and gave the ball right back to the Rebels. Corral tied Manning for another single-game record moments later when Yeboah made a great snag for his second score of the night. He finished 31-of-34 for 412 yards.
Dominance continued for the defense, John Rhys Plumlee played the remainder of the game at quarterback and added a passing touchdown, and Ole Miss rolled to victory. It was what a win over Vanderbilt should look like.