#16 Ole Miss squeaks by Tulsa to remain undefeated
OXFORD, Miss. (WLBT) - The Ole Miss Rebels grinded out an 8-point win Saturday night in Oxford against the Tulsa Golden Hurricanes 35-27. And, Ole Miss Head Coach Lane Kiffin was not very pleased with the performance as the Rebels failed to score a single point in the second half.
“You know, if we were sitting in here and we would have played another half like that, we would’ve been 200, to whatever, 20 something, combined scored in the season, Coach Kiffin said. “It would be hard to keep kids’ attention, and they would hear everywhere how great they are. So, you know, they definitely should be listening after that. You would not think we won the game in that locker room at all.”
Aside from the second-half performance, the Rebels’ offense had shining moments as freshman running back, Quinshon Judkins rushed for 140 yards and 2 touchdowns.
But, the defense struggled to keep up with Tulsa during and after the injury to starting Tulsa quarterback Davis Brin, which brought in the mobile second-stringer Braylon Braxton for the Golden Hurricanes.
“And really no disrespect because I think the first quarterback’s really elite passing game and everything, but I’d rather him than when you can’t tackle the guy and he’s running around. So, the other guy kept running around and we kept missing him,” Kiffin said.
The touchdown drive that cut the Rebels’ lead to just 8 points after leading by 18 at the half, was largely contributed to a debatable targeting call on Ole Miss defensive back Otis Reese that gave Tulsa an excellent field position.
“He’s just blocking him like you teach guys in peewee football. So, that rule, that one I don’t understand. You’re not defenseless when you can turn your head and look.”
The Rebels remain undefeated and begin conference play next Saturday in Oxford against the #8 Kentucky Wildcats at 11 a.m. on ESPN.
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