COLUMBIA, Mo. – Missouri will try to complete a perfect 5-0 homestand when it hosts Ole Miss on Saturday for a cross-divisional SEC matchup. The Tigers have won six of the seven all-time meetings, including the only one since they joined the conference.
TV: 7 p.m. ET, ESPN2. LINE: Missouri -12
It's homecoming for the Tigers, who have won six straight at Memorial Stadium dating to last season - outscoring their visitors 235-59 over that stretch. That includes a 42-10 rout of Troy last week in which Kelly Bryant threw three touchdown passes and ran for another score. The Rebels are coming off a dominant 31-6 win over Vanderbilt that followed back-to-back losses. Despite dropping two of its three non-conference games thus far, Ole Miss is off to a strong start in SEC action and looks to improve to 3-1 in conference play.
ABOUT OLE MISS (3-3, 2-1 SEC)
Freshman quarterback John Rhys Plumlee has boosted the Rebels' already solid rushing attack since stepping in for injured starter Matt Corral (ribs). Ole Miss rolled up 413 yards on the ground against Vanderbilt as Plumlee rushed for 165, adding another weapon to a dynamic offense that features running backs Scottie Phillips and Jerrion Ealy and wide receiver Elijah Moore. The Rebels also have been tough against the run, holding four of their last five opponents under 70 yards.
ABOUT MISSOURI (4-1, 1-0)
Bryant has picked up where Drew Lock left off in guiding the Tigers' prolific offense, which has been well-balanced with the quarterback distributing the ball to a bevy of receivers and backs Larry Rountree III and Tyler Badie running effectively. Tight end Albert Okwuegbunam and wide receiver Jonathan Nance have been two of Bryant's favorite targets, combining for eight of the Tigers' 11 touchdown receptions. Missouri leads the nation with five defensive TDs, matching the school's single-season record, but the defense was dealt a huge blow last week with linebacker Cale Garrett suffering a pectoral injury that is expected to end his season.
1. Missouri has scored at least 31 points in 10 consecutive contests, its longest streak since a 14-game run from 2006-07.
2. Ole Miss is the least-penalized team in the SEC and ranks 18th in the nation, drawing just 5.2 flags per game.
3. The Tigers have outscored their opponents 79-7 in the first quarter this season and 95-14 over their last eight contests.
PREDICTION: Missouri 31, Ole Miss 24