Could I have written this post four years ago?
Tennessee at Ole Miss
Saturday October 18, 2014 | Oxford, Mississippi | 6:00 pm Central | ESPN
Tennessee begins the second half of its season on the road, in the state that has become the focus of college football. Halfway through the season, the Vols have half the number of wins needed for consideration as a post-season participant. But the second half of the 2014 campaign promises to be a difficult road.
First stop is Oxford and Ole Miss, the undefeated slayers of Alabama and Texas A&M and ranked #3 in the country.
Freshmen offensive linemen, meet the Mississippi Front Seven.
The Ole Miss defense is the jewel of the 2014 Rebs. It is the highest-rated defensive unit in the SEC and top-five nationally. Primarily, it excels when a team tries to run laterally around the end or throws one of those lateral bubble screens.
Here are some numbers describing the Mississippi defense…
- 6 TDs allowed through 6 games.
- 4 scores of its own.
- Allow 4.31 yards per play (fifth nationally).
- A “havoc rate” of 19.4 percent, an advanced metric describing the havoc it creates by including tackles for loss (including sacks), forced fumbles and passes defended (interceptions and break-ups), all divided by total plays. That’s right – they creat havoc on nearly one out of five plays they defend.
I’ll bet the Vol OL and QB haven’t had much sleep so far this week, because they probably are painfully aware of these numbers…
23 – the number of sacks Tennessee has allowed this season.
48 – the number of tackles for loss Tennessee has allowed this season.
Football, like many other team sports, is a game of matchups, which in this upcoming game don’t look good unless you like your football played in blue, red, and gray in front of truckloads of drunk fans under the lights in a small, Southern town.
Mississippi 31 Tennessee 7
These posts are getting old, because I feel like I’ve been writing the same one for the last 4+ years.