Comparison: Ole Miss versus Memphis in 2008-09

Since we only have a week of football under our belts, the only thing we can do right now for comparison's sake is look at what teams did last year versus what they did this year. So with that in mind, let's take a look at how Ole Miss did against Memphis both last year and this year.

As with previous comparisons, sack yardage has been taken out of the rushing totals.

OFFENSE

CATEGORY vs. MEM '08 vs. MEM '09
Total Yards 438 352
Passing 222 175
Yds. per Pass 9.7 8
Rushing 216 177
Yds. Per Rush 6.0 4.7
Turnovers 0 3
Time of Poss. 26:20 27:42
Sacks All. 0 1 (-3 yards)

 

The Rebel offense took a step back between last year and this year, with both total yardage and average yardage per pass and carry declining. The three turnovers are a big shock too. But, there are any number of reasons for this. It was on the road, and it's somewhat of a rivalry game. Key players were in the early stages of contracting the flu. They are a favorite this year and as such, they held things back as opposed to last year when there was no reason to. They simply had a sloppy day.

It will take a little time to know what exactly it was. For now, the key is using the off week to get Jevan Snead and Dexter McCluster back healthy from the flu.

DEFENSE

CATEGORY vs. MEM '08 vs. MEM '09
Total Yards 453 316
Passing 265 134
Yds. per Pass 6 3.7
Rushing 188 182
Yds. Per Rush 4.7 4.7
Turnovers 2 3
Time of Poss. 33:40 32:18
Sacks For 0 3 (-32 yards)

 

The defense, on the other hand, had a much better day. It wasn't so much in the rushing, clearly, but the Rebels were much better in pass defense. They cut Memphis' yards per pass almost in half and had three sacks for an average of about 10 yards apiece. For one day at least, the Rebels didn't miss the departed Peria Jerry.

Since a lot of teams can be rusty on the first weekend, and because of the flu factor, it's too early to say for sure how Ole Miss is in relation to last year. The fact that the defense didn't fall off any despite any week one issues is definitely a good sign. If you want to win the West this year, you're going to need to bring a tough defense.

Previous Comparison: Alabama, Arkansas, Auburn, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, LSU.

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