Time: Noon ET/11 a.m. CT
TV: SEC Network (Taylor Zazour, Matt Stinchcomb, Kris Budden
Following a narrow victory against Tennessee last week, the South Carolina Gamecocks (4-3, 3-3) make their way to Oxford to take on the Ole Miss Rebels (5-3, 1-3) in an 11 a.m. showdown. This marks the first time these teams have played since 2009, and South Carolina’s first trip to Oxford since 2008, which is pretty unacceptable and dumb for two teams that share a conference, but that’s another story for another day.
Ole Miss quarterback Jordan Ta’amu looks to bounce back from a rough game in Ole Miss’ loss to Auburn two weeks ago. Ta’amu finished the game with 324 passing yards, but it took a season-high 46 attempts (completing just 27) and one touchdown. As is the case with most college football programs, when Ta’amu struggles, Ole Miss struggles. He has been very pedestrian in their three losses, and looked very good in their three wins.
The same can’t be said for South Carolina quarterback Jake Bentley, as he’s struggled mostly all season and the Gamecocks have found ways to be victorious anyway. In last week’s win over Tennessee, Bentley went just 11-16 for 152 yards, but Rico Dowdle saved the day with 14 carries for 140 yards.
Without oversimplifying the game, that’s what it comes down to. If South Carolina wants to win, they have to slow down Ta’amu (and SEC leading receiver A.J. Brown), and if Ole Miss wants to win, they have to slow down Dowdle.