AUBURN, Ala. — The early kickoff – 11 a.m. local time – was a concern some Auburn fans, but the Tigers took care of business early against Ole Miss and extended their winning streak to four with a 44-23 victory in Jordan-Hare Stadium on Saturday.
Here are some takeaways from the SEC West contest.
Kerryon Johnson shines
Johnson’s health has been a question since he injured his hamstring in the season-opener. He had no issues Saturday. Johnson had 204 yards and three touchdowns on 28 carries. Johnson has found the end zone 12 times this season. He also caught two passes for 23 yards. Running back Kamryn Pettway was held out of the action, but the Tigers didn’t miss him.
Jarrett Stidham stays hot
Stidham was 14-of-21 for 235 yards and two scores, and is 72-of-91 (79.1 percent) over the past four weeks. He showed signs of taking better care of the football and being more aware in the pocket, and showed more athleticism than over the past few weeks.
The defense looked sluggish
Auburn had been the only FBS team nationally that hadn’t allowed 14 points this season. That ended Saturday. Auburn had shown itself to be a top defensive team, but the Tigers did not show that Saturday. Auburn had a hard time breaking down in space, did not wrap up and did not cover well. At the same time, it never was in doubt and 13 of Ole Miss’ points came in the final period.
Ole Miss is bad
Ole Miss was clobbered 66-3 by Alabama last week, and the Rebels weren’t able to keep this week’s game competitive either. Auburn scored touchdowns on each of its first five drives and led 35-3 at halftime. Ole Miss moved the ball and got some stops in the second half, but there was not a competitive snap in the second half for the Rebels for the second week in a row.
(You can follow Zac Blackerby on Twitter @Zblackerby)
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