Ole Miss Review: We’re Going Bowling! + Lutz’s NFL Grab
Well, I asked for a beat down and I received one as Auburn disposed of Ole Miss on Saturday 41-24. It was really a game of two halves, as after Auburn took a 14 point lead, it lead to further uncertainty about our secure lead after we gave up 10 unanswered points. At that point, many Auburn fans were thinking “We’ve seen this before” as 14-0 leads haven’t been that kind to Auburn fans as of late. After hitting a field goal, Ole Miss then scored a touchdown of their own, and the half ended 17 a piece.
The first half was tough to watch, I have no doubt in my mind that Clint is the man we need at Quarterback and he did well for the entire game, he made some really nice throws downfield which was pleasing to see, considering that we had literally no vertical passing game a few weeks before.
The two fumbles by Dyer and McCalebb were inexcusable. Dyer is usually very secure with the football, so for him that’s not a mistake that Auburn fans are used to seeing. McCalebb is the same, but in this case he just mishandled the pitch and turned it over. Mistakes on the road are hard to get over, but mistakes at home don’t help teams either, but Dyer did what he does best, he shook off the mistake and dominated the the second half. He finished the game with 177 yards and 1 TD on 27 carries, not too shabby eh?
Another kid that really impressed, who we all know and love, is Phillip Lutzenkirchen. Everyone knows how talented he is, and because of his unpredictability in the offense, combined with his sensational talents, he is one of the country’s most underrated and indefensible players. He had two scores last night, both of which he had scampered to the corner pylon for. The second touchdown was a thing of beauty, and it might end up being Auburn’s best touchdown of the season. Lutzy just palmed the ball out of the air, put it in his other hand, and stretched it for the touchdown. He’s already broken the all-time touchdown record for tight-ends, and might go down as the best tight-end Auburn has ever had, incredible when you think about it. There is no doubt in my mind that he will be one of the best tight-ends at the next level, he is just the whole entire package.
Defensively, we were inconsistent, which isn’t encouraging since two of our next three games will be against tough offenses. In the first half, Ole Miss were able to run on us fairly well, we struggled to find the guy on the outside and the reverses they ran also gave us a lot of trouble, The second half was much better, we adjusted well and after giving up 17 points in the first, we proceeded to give up only another 7 in the second, which were in all honesty second (literally) garbage points. By then we had subbed out most of our defense, so I’m not too worried about that.
Eltoro Freeman had his best performance in an Auburn jersey on saturday. His official stat-line was 11 tackles and 2 sacks (for -8 yards), which was a good sign to see out of “The Bull”. He’s the kind of player that gives you 125% every play and I hope he can continue it through the rest of the season because we are going to need that killer talent and instinct when we play tougher opponents, though very late in his career, he may finally be living up to his potential, so better late than never I suppose.
All in all it was a good finish to the game, and the even better news is that we are finally bowl eligible. I have no idea which bowl game we are destined for right now, because that can change rapidly in the coming weeks. We finally get a week off, after playing 9 straight weeks getting a well earned rest (plus extra-time to prepare for Georgia) will be nothing but a health boost for this team, physically and mentally.
In two weeks, we play a game that is crucial to our season, which I’ll get into another time, but right now I am going to enjoy this win and be happy with where we are. We are still ranked and still haven’t lost any games which we shouldn’t have, which is nothing but a positive, because hey, we’re rebuilding after all.