A much better second half than first for the Rebels. Lots of guys rested, lots of young guys played.
Ole Miss had season-highs of total yards (572) and rushing yards (292).
Mark Dodson got his first carries since the SEMO game and looked pretty sharp with 57 yards on seven carries, and a 30-yard touchdown on a dump pass.
He also had one of three Ole Miss fumbles, none of which were lost.
I’Tavius Mathers and Jaylen Walton carried the ground game, Mathers with 138 yards — including a 64-yard TD run — and Walton with 86 yards.
Bo Wallace played his second-straight turnover-free game.
Here’s Dave Wommack:
It hasn’t been pretty all the time, but it has been effective.
A couple of a big plays — a 37-yard Bo Wallace-to-Ja-Mes Logan pass and a 40-yard Jaylen Walton run — helped Ole Miss take a 17-0 first-quarter lead.
The first also included a 50-yard field goal by Andrew Ritter, but there were drops by I’tavius Mathers and Donte Moncrief and fumbles that Idaho failed to find.
In short, the first half was not the clean and efficient two quarters the Rebels hoped to produce.
Idaho hit Ole Miss with a couple of nice plays. One, a 42-yard gain on a crossing pattern that found a wide open left side set up the Vandals to score on a 2-yard run by QB Taylor Davis. That too was set up nicely after running left a couple of times then Davis faking left and keeping right.
The Rebels failed to move on their next possession, and Idaho was in business on the Ole Miss end of the field after a short punt.
The Vandals reached the 8 with a first down, but on third-and-goal from the 10, Trae Elston saved a touchdown with a PBU on a slant. A short field goal attempt bounced off the right upright to preserve a 17-7 lead.
Ole Miss then found a groove on the ground as Jaylen Walton and I’Tavius Mathers led an 80-yard drive. Walton scored on a 1-yard run, fumbling into the end zone, but the play was upheld on review.
Ole Miss has a 208-120 yardage edge. The REbels have rushed for 111, led by Walton with 78 on nine carries.
Wallace is 10-for-16 passing for 97 yards. Logan and Moncrief have three catches each.
The bottom line about this game was how much would the starters play and who could the Rebels’ rest.
The starters will need to play a little longer in this one.
Navy shirts, traditional gray pants for the Rebels tonight.
Jeff Scott and Senquez Golson are dressed and going through warm-ups, as are Cameron Whigham and Evan Swindall.
First game without freshman tight end Evan Engram, a weapon the Rebels will miss, though probably not tonight.
Had some Idaho fans — yes, a few are here — a few hours ago express their concern about the cold temps tonight. It’s supposed to get into the 50s.
I’ll have updates on Twitter and will be back here at halftime and after the game.