The Rebels earned a 37-20 win over the Green Wave last weekend. However, Tulane played without its starting quarterback. Therefore, some are putting an asterisk next to that win.
Nonetheless, the Rebels came away with the win and are now 2-0 on the season/
On the other hand, Georgia Tech began the season with a loss to Louisville but responded against South Carolina State with a 48-13 win. The Yellow Jackets have some potential, but the defense has lacked so far.
Can Ole Miss dominate offensively and cover a big spread on Saturday?
Check out the Georgia Tech vs Mississippi preview for Saturday’s non-conference tilt on the SEC Network.
Date & Time:
Location: Vaught-Hemingway Stadium
Haynes King’s Fresh Start
Everybody loves an excellent non-conference matchup between two teams in Power Five conferences.
However, the Yellow Jackets don’t compare to the Rebels yet.
Georgia Tech lost to Louisville in the season opener but defeated an FCS foe in South Carolina State last weekend. They’re still looking for their first win against an FCS opponent.
It’ll likely have to wait another week.
However, the Yellow Jackets are confident in Haynes King at quarterback. King has held the Yellow Jackets to over 500 yards of offense per game while accumulating over 600 yards in the air, with seven touchdowns and just one interception.
King played his first three seasons at Texas A&M. He’s never thrown for more than 1,220 yards in a season, thanks to some injuries and backup roles. Now he’s the main guy at Georgia Tech and taking advantage.
King has completed 65.6% of passes and has only been sacked once in two games. He’s sitting at 24th in QBR and has familiarity with the SEC, including Ole Miss.
Although King is in his fourth season, he’s still only a sophomore. He was a redshirt in 2020 and got another year back due to an injury.
The offense is very versatile around King. They’ve added 311.5 yards per game in the air, along with 221.5 yards per game on the ground.
These numbers probably won’t last once they face more challenging opponents like Ole Miss. But Georgia Tech got themselves an upgrade at quarterback in King. If nothing changes, they’ll have him for three years and many more NCAAF games.
The Ole Miss Defense Has Impressed!
Ole Miss has always been known for its offensive firepower. But this year, the defense could be just as good.
Ole Miss hired Pete Golding from Alabama to Mississippi to be the defensive coordinator of the Rebels. Golding explained that his wife graduated from Ole Miss and that he wanted to bring his family back to Mississippi.
Through two games, the Ole Miss defense has held Mercer and Tulane to 288.5 yards per game, including just 102 yards per game on the ground.
Ole Miss has dominated in the ground game. They’ve also been disciplined tackling. The coverage has been dynamite, and the pass rush is effective.
The defense replaced eight starters on the defense from last season. But transfers and the younger players have developed into a sensational defense.
PFF has safety, Daijahn Anthony, at one of the highest grades in coverage this year. Although Jamarious Brown has only played in one game and 19 snaps, he’s looked like a good run-stopper for the Rebels.
If the Rebels continue to display this defense, Ole Miss could be a legitimate threat to win the SEC West over teams like Alabama and LSU.
Georgia Tech vs Mississippi Preview
The college football schedule will have a lot of conference games following this week. So, let’s enjoy these intriguing non-conference matchups one last time before conference play.
Ole Miss will come into this game as an 18-point favorite at home. Meanwhile, the total is at 63. The NCAA Football odds favor Ole Miss, but a lot.
Georgia Tech covered a seven-point spread against the Louisville Cardinals despite losing that game 39-34. However, as heavy favorites, the Yellow Jackets couldn’t cover a 45-point spread, defeating South Carolina State 48-13.
The Over-hit in both of their games to start the season.
On the other hand, Ole Miss is 2-0 with covering the spread this season. They were just 35-point spreads against Mercer and won by 70. Meanwhile, they were -13.5-point favorites against Tulane on the road and won that game by 17.
The Rebels are happy with the defensive performance, as acknowledged above. However, on offense, Ole Miss feels like they could use more impactful running. The Rebels have earned only 116 yards per game on the ground behind Quinshon Judkins.
Judkins rushed for 1,567 yards on 274 carries and added 16 touchdowns last season. He averaged 5.7 yards per carry.
Judkins has only rushed for 3.5 yards per carry on 31 attempts this season. His longest rush has been just 13 yards, but he still has three touchdowns.
So far this season. Georgia Tech has been solid with its run defense. However, they’ve still allowed 211.5 yards per game on the ground. It’s not that the Yellow Jackets aren’t prepared. They’re just missing point-blank tackles that have hurt their chances of getting backfield stops.
On the other hand, the Georgia Tech pass rush isn’t very good. That’s an area where the Ole Miss offense can exploit. If Jaxson Dart has time in the pocket, he’ll find Tre Harris multiple times in the endzone. Harris already has eight catches for 188 yards and five touchdowns.
Trust Ole Miss!
In this Georgia Tech vs Mississippi preview, we discussed how Georgia Tech’s pass rush will be inefficient. The Yellow Jackets have also missed a lot of tackles to begin the year.
On the other hand, the Georgia Tech offensive line has struggled to protect Haynes King. King has put some some solid numbers but showed a lot of inconsistencies in his previous years. Don’t be surprised if he struggles against this new Ole Miss defense behind defensive coordinator Golding.
For Ole Miss, Dart has also thrown for over 600 yards passing and has six touchdowns. He’s a much more reliable passer, especially in this Ole Miss offense that continues to pop out NFL-ready quarterbacks.
The offensive line has looked solid, and the passing game has many receivers who can go up and make plays. Once the run game is all figured out behind Judkins, the Rebels will be hard to stop. Back Ole Miss to earn a cover at -18 against the Yellow Jackets on Saturday.