Ole Miss returned home Saturday to defeat the New Mexico State Aggies 41-3 on a record-setting performance by the offense.
“It’s fun to be home and have a really good win,” head coach Matt Luke said. “Happy we came out with a win.”
Ole Miss (4-6, 2-4 SEC) scored all of its 41 points with 606 total yards behind a strong running game. The Rebels reeled in 447 yards on the ground – the fifth most in school history.
Starting quarterback John Rhys Plumlee broke the all-time freshman rusher record on the first play from scrimmage with a 14-yard dash. The record was held by Mico McSwain with 612 yards in 2005.
The Hattiesburg native continued to etch his name into the all-time record book as he surpassed Joe Gunn’s 1998 freshman rushing touchdown record with his sixth and seventh TD. Plumlee finished with 177 yards on 12 touches and two touchdowns on the ground. He passed for 124 yards against the Aggies.
Freshman running backs Snoop Conner (109 yards, 2 TDs) and Jerrion Ealy (71 yards, 1 touchdown) had huge performances in the Vaught.
“They all made big plays. John Rhys made some plays and Snoop broke some tackles,” Luke said. “I think those guys will continue to gain more confidence as the season goes on.”
Ole Miss finished the game going 13-for-19 through the air with Plumlee and Matt Corral as the Rebels were able to hit seven different receivers. Elijah Moore (28), Jason Pellerin (25) and Octavious Colley (21) all recorded grabs longer than 20 yards.
Coach Mike MacIntrye’s Landshark defense suffered when Tariqious Tisdale went down with an ankle injury that did not allow him to return to action.
The defense only allowed the Aggies to have 193 total yards of offense with 127 through the air and only 66 on the ground.
“(The Aggies) were able to complete some short (passes),” MacIntyre said. “We just had to make sure that we did not give up the long ones.”
Three different Ole Miss defenders-Lakia Henry, Jacquez Jones and Keidron Smith-all had seven total tackles against New Mexico State.
Ole Miss closes out the home schedule next Saturday night as they host No. 1 LSU. Kickoff is at 6 p.m. on ESPN.
“It should be a great atmosphere here next week with the No. 1 team rolling into town,” Luke said.