GAMEDAY PREVIEW: Ole Miss At No. 7 LSU

OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM Randall Mackey (photo by Joshua McCoy)
OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM
Randall Mackey (photo by Joshua McCoy)
OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM

Nov. 17, 2012

Gameday Central | Scouting Report | Game Notes | Live Stats

TV: CBS | Ole Miss Radio Network (Sirius 92, XM 199)

The Last Meeting
LSU52
Ole Miss3
November 19, 2011
Oxford, Miss.
Ole Miss Falls To No. 1 LSU On Senior Night
Quarterback Barry Brunetti rushed for 74 yards on 15 carries, but Ole Miss fell to No. 1 LSU 52-3 here Saturday on senior night at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium.

By Mike Swartz, Ole Miss Athletics Media Relations

BATON ROUGE, La. – With just one more win needed to become bowl eligible, the Ole Miss Rebels (5-5, 2-4 SEC) visit the No. 7 LSU Tigers (8-2, 4-2) today.

The Rebels come into today’s contest searching for their sixth win in order to become bowl eligible for the first time since 2009. After a close loss to Vanderbilt last weekend in Oxford, Ole Miss looks to rebound against long-time rival LSU.

Losing yet another tight SEC contest at home, the Rebels could easily have two more wins. Their two home conference losses have been by an average of two points.

“Obviously when you lose a close, tight game like we did (last) Saturday night, every decision is magnified,” said Ole Miss head coach Hugh Freeze. “There are so many things that we've learned in a couple of losses this year, and this game is truly a game of inches.”

Sophomore quarterback Bo Wallace was the star of last week’s game, throwing for a career-high 403 yards on 31 of 49 passing attempts with a touchdown and no interceptions. Wide receiver Ja-Mes Logan was Wallace’s main target, having a break-out game with 160 receiving yards on eight catches. Wallace now ranks in the top 50 nationally and fifth in the SEC with 250.8 total offensive yards per game.

From the defensive side, the consistent play of safety Cody Prewitt and linebacker Denzel Nkemdiche continue to keep the Rebels alive. The two combined for 13 tackles and four and a half tackles for loss against Vanderbilt. A redshirt freshman, Nkemdiche now tops all SEC freshmen and ranks second among freshmen nationally with 1.15 tackles for loss per game.

The No.7 LSU Tigers come off of a 37-17 victory over Mississippi State in Baton Rouge. Quarterback Zach Mettenberger has been on a hot streak, with a 66 percent completion rate, 571 yards and three touchdowns in his last two games against ranked opponents Alabama and Mississippi State. The Rebels will have a tough task of stopping Mettenberger and the rest of the LSU offense.

“I expect (Mettenberger) to continue to be a threat to throw the football like he has the last few weeks,” said Freeze. “He's been very good at it. Anytime a quarterback gets confidence, it makes for a dangerous situation.”

The Tigers are nearly unbeatable at home. In their last 29 games in Death Valley, LSU is 26-3, and one of those three losses came when the Rebels stunned the Tigers 31-13 back in 2008. This game marks the 101st meeting between the two teams, Ole Miss’ second-most played rivalry behind Mississippi State. The Tigers hold a 57-39-4 lead in the series.

Since the teams began playing for the Magnolia Bowl Trophy in 2008, the series is tied 2-2.

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