OXFORD — Â David Ash had a coming-out party for the No.14 Longhorns Saturday night in the least likely place, on the road in an SEC enviornment. Â Ash threw four touchdowns, and Olympian/wide receiver Marquis Goodwin had 182 total yards, and two touchdowns in the 66-31 victory over the Ole Miss Rebels.
Texas produced the 676 total yards, the most since 2008, and it was the most points Ole Miss had given up since 1917.
Ash had touchdown tosses of 46 and 55 yards, and junior Mike Davis being the recipient of one, snagged five balls for 124 yards and a touchdown.
“I was really excited about the number of explosive plays we had tonight,” Horns coach Mack Brown said. “After Marquise’s big play, our offense really played well and played with a lot of confidence the rest of the way.’
Malcolm Brown led Texas with 21 carries for 129 yards, and two scores. He is proving why he needs 15+ carries per game. And when he starts running downhill, he gets stronger as the game progresses.
The Longhorns defense set the tone early with sacks by Jackson Jeffcoat and Brandon Moore as the defensive line got a tremendous push.Â Ole Miss was outmatched along the lines of scrimmage, and quarterback Bo Wallace was harassed into three interceptions and 14 qb-pressures.
Wallace finished with 178 yards, and one touchdown, while Rebels wideout Donte Moncrief caught seven passes for 144 yards and a touchdown.
It was a steady dose of Joe Bergeron and Brown early and often as the Horns offensive line pushed Ole Miss back, especially at the point of attack. But the big plays came from Goodwin.Â He sprinted for a 69-yard touchdown on a sweep giving the Horns a 17-7 lead, then making a 47-yard catch on the very next drive that set up another score and pushed Texas ahead 24-10.
The Rebels (2-1) Â kept things close for a bit thanks to some horrible arm-tackling by the Horns defense, mainly in the secondary. Countless times Adrian Phillips was out of position, took poor angles and just flat out got beat.
Texas kept the foot on the pedal into the second half getting scoring runs from D.J. Monroe and Brown.
By the late third quarter, the Horns had a 52-24 lead in from of the fourth-largest crowd in Vaught-Hemingway history.
Ole Miss freshman Jaylen Walton returned a kickoff for a 100-yard touchdown, one of the only bright spots.
Brown mentioned that the Longhorns’ defense didn’t play up to par, but he wasn’t going to get greedy.
“After every game you have concerns, but when you win 66-31 you have to be pleased.” Brown said.
In the end, Texas was just too physical for Ole Miss. We saw the birth of an offense, potentially high-scoring one at that, and we saw flashes of a defensive front seven that could dominate. The Horns have two weeks to clean up the tackling, the 2011 Big12 champion Oklahoma State Cowboys await.