Bowl Champs: Ole Miss Tops Pitt 38-17

OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM Ole Miss head coach Hugh Freeze led the Rebels to a 7-6 record and a BBVA Compass Bowl victory in his first year.
OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM
Ole Miss head coach Hugh Freeze led the Rebels to a 7-6 record and a BBVA Compass Bowl victory in his first year.
OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM

Jan. 5, 2013

Stats |  Quotes |  Notes

Finished In-Game Live Blog | Complete Game Book | Photo Gallery

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - It was worth the wait.

Six weeks after closing out its regular season by defeating No. 24 Mississippi State to bring home the Egg Bowl trophy for the first time since 2008, Ole Miss (7-6) took down Pitt in the BBVA Compass Bowl in Birmingham, Ala., 38-17. It was Ole Miss' first bowl appearance since topping Oklahoma State 21-7 in the 2010 AT&T Cotton Bowl. The 38 points scored by Ole Miss is a BBVA Compass Bowl record.

"I try to not make too much out of a single game either way, but it's no question that this advances our journey a bit and the process we're on to develop in the SEC West year in and year out," Ole Miss head coach Hugh Freeze said.

Ole Miss has now won nine of its last 10 bowl games and each of its last five. The win moves Ole Miss' bowl record to 22-12. The Rebels' 22 bowl victories are tied for the 11th most in the country with Auburn and LSU.

Ole Miss sophomore quarterback Bo Wallace, the BBVA Compass Bowl MVP, finished the game 22-32 passing for 151 yards with three touchdowns and two interceptions. The Rebels spread the ball around through the air with three receivers catching five or more passes. Freshman running back I'Tavius Mathers led Ole Miss on the ground with six carries for 96 yards, including a 62-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter, the longest in BBVA Compass Bowl history.

On the defensive side of the ball, junior middle linebacker Mike Marry led Ole Miss with seven tackles, four tackles for loss and a forced fumble.

Playing in front of a predominantly red-clad BBVA Compass Bowl record crowd of 59,135, Ole Miss got off to a quick start. Rebels cornerback Senquez Golson dropped back into coverage and picked off Pitt quarterback Tino Sunseri's pass and returned it to the Panthers' 23-yard line. The interception was Golson's third of the season, with all three coming in the last three games.

Following Golson's interception, which was just the third against Sunseri this season, Wallace capped off a five-play, 23-yard drive with a 14-yard touchdown pass to junior wide receiver Ja-Mes Logan to give the Rebels a 7-0 lead.
 
Wallace later completed his eighth consecutive pass to start the game with a 27-yard touchdown pass to senior wide receiver Randall Mackey, who made a gorgeous diving catch in the end zone to give the Rebels a 14-0 lead. Mackey's touchdown reception was the first of his career.

Following a Pitt touchdown, Wallace completed his third touchdown pass of the game with an 18-yard strike to sophomore wide receiver Vince Sanders. The touchdown pass, Wallace's 22nd of the year, moved him up to fourth on the Ole Miss single-season list, surpassing Eli Manning's 2002 total of 21.

The Rebels closed out the first half with a 31-yard field goal from Bryon Rose that gave the Rebels a 24-10 lead going into the break. Ole Miss' 24 first-half points tied the BBVA Compass Bowl record for most points scored in a half.

Ole Miss took a 21-point lead with 21 seconds remaining in the third quarter on a one-yard quarterback sneak from Barry Brunetti that put the game on ice. The Rebels' defense gave up just four yards in the entire third quarter, and did not allow a single first down.

Following the game, Freeze was doused with yellow Gatorade and spoke about how far Ole Miss came during the season after being picked to finish last in the Southeastern Conference in the preseason prognostications.

"Our guys really chose to buy in and decided we can determine who we want to be. We don't have to have someone else determine that," Freeze said. "I didn't know if we could (go to a bowl) or not, but I knew we could attack each week as an individual challenge and game. I was very clear with our goal in year one, that was to play with passion of football for our great university. I have no question, it was not always the prettiest thing, but I don't doubt one single game that we didn't give passion for our university."

Ole Miss Gear
    Facebook
    Twitter
    • Loading Tweets...
      1 second ago
    Blog
    • Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl Challenge to Air on ESPNU Aug. 1

      Thursday, July 30, 2015 -

      Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE ATLANTA - On Saturday, fans can tune in to see the Rebels duo of Head Football Coach Hugh Freeze and former Ole Miss basketball player Sean Tuohy compete in the Chick-fil-A... read more

    • Rebels Emerge on Four Watch Lists This Week

      Friday, July 17, 2015 -

      Only 50 days until The Grove is full, the constant shouts of "Hotty Toddy" are in the air, and football kicks off 100 years in Vaught-Hemingway Stadium! Looking forward to this upcoming college football season, seven Rebels were named to... read more

    • Football Rebels All Over First Week of Watch List Releases

      Friday, July 10, 2015 -

      As we near the 2015 college football season, national organizations have started to release watch lists for their respective awards. Through the first week of watch lists being released, multiple Rebels have been announced as players that fans need to... read more

    • Engram, Hilton and Johnson to Represent Ole Miss at SEC Football Media Days

      Wednesday, July 8, 2015 -

      Along with head coach Hugh Freeze, three Rebels will represent Ole Miss at the annual SEC Football Media Days next week. Junior Evan Engram, just named to the John Mackey Award Watch List for college football's most outstanding tight end,... read more

    • Five Rebels Tabbed Preseason All-SEC in The Birmingham News

      Tuesday, June 30, 2015 -

      Five Ole Miss Rebels were chosen as preseason All-SEC selections by some of the people who work closest with the student-athletes, the football media relations directors. The 14 football media relations directors of the Southeastern Conference institutions voted in the... read more

    • Lindy's Sports Gives Seven Rebels Preseason Recognition

      Wednesday, June 24, 2015 -

      The preseason accolades just don't stop for the Ole Miss football team. Everywhere you look, Rebels can be found on preseason All-America teams. Lindy's Sports recognized seven Rebels for preseason honors, including four All-Americans. Four Ole Miss Football Rebels were... read more

    • Five Rebels Named Preseason All-America by Athlon Sports

      Tuesday, June 23, 2015 -

      With the season just 74 days away, members of the 2015 Ole Miss football team continue to earn recognition on Preseason All-America lists. Athlon Sports, the latest media outlet to release its 2015 college football preseason All-America team, gave five... read more

    • Sporting News Tabs Four Rebels to Preseason All-America Teams

      Monday, June 15, 2015 - Football

      Preseason All-America football teams continue to roll in, and Ole Miss has been well represented each time.Today, the Sporting News unveiled its preseason All-America first and second teams, which includes a total of four Rebels.OT Laremy Tunsil and DT Robert... read more

    • Athlon Sports Names Nine Rebels Preseason All-SEC

      Wednesday, June 10, 2015 - Football

      Individual preseason accolades continue to pile up for the Ole Miss football team as college football magazines look toward the 2015 season. Athlon Sports is the latest magazine to release its preseason all-conference teams, June 10; the magazine named nine... read more

    • Eleven Rebels Garner Phil Steele Preseason Honors

      Monday, June 1, 2015 - Football

      The start of summer heat and vacations is also the start of another tradition - preseason college football magazines.One of the first to produce a magazine every year is Phil Steele, whose 2015 version includes about as many Ole Miss... read more

    • Football Signees Report for Summer Classes

      Friday, May 29, 2015 - Football

      Although they will not begin competing for the Rebels until the fall, several members of the 2015 signing class have arrived at Ole Miss to begin their college journey this summer. The first of two summer sessions offered at the... read more

    • Ole Miss Athletics Week in Review (April 28-May 4, 2015)

      Monday, May 4, 2015 - Athletics

      Ole Miss Athletics Week in ReviewApril 28-May 4, 2015Baseball - The Rebels started the week defeating the Bulldogs, 11-1 in the annual Governor's Cup. The 10-run win for the Rebels marked the largest margin of victory in the 36-year history... read more

    • VIDEO: Rebel Road Trip 2015

      Monday, May 4, 2015 - Athletics

      Rebel Road Trip 2015 from Ole Miss Rebels on Vimeo.... read more

    • More on Steelers' Selection of Golson

      Friday, May 1, 2015 - Football

      Welcome to Pittsburgh...and welcome to #SteelersNation, @Quez_G! #SteelersDraft pic.twitter.com/oY8wZc10Kk-- Pittsburgh Steelers (@steelers) May 2, 2015 Congrats Senquez Golson! Drafted 56th overall in the 2015 #NFLDRAFT by the Pittsburgh Steelers. #HottyToddy #FinsUp pic.twitter.com/EPGayDNOu7-- Ole Miss Football (@OleMissFB) May 2, 2015 Ole... read more

    • Six Rebels Among Inaugural Scott County HOF Class

      Wednesday, April 29, 2015 - Athletics

      Six men with ties to Ole Miss were part of the inaugural class of 25 athletes and coaches inducted into the Scott County Hall of Fame this past Saturday at Roosevelt State Park in Morton. It is believed that this... read more