OXFORD • The status of Missouri quarterback Kelly Bryant after a knee injury against Troy created a social media stir.
As it turns out, Bryant will practice this week and play Saturday, the school says. It’s the Ole Miss quarterback position that remains a little murky.
Freshman John Rhys Plumlee is expected to make his second start when the Rebels meet the Tigers, but the status of redshirt freshman quarterback Matt Corral is less clear.
Plumlee started the Rebels’ 31-6 win over Vanderbilt and played the entire game. Ole Miss coach Matt Luke had said last week that he expected Corral to play.
He did not play because he was not fully healed from bruised ribs sustained against Cal on Sept. 21. He’s missed two games since then, and it’s not guaranteed he’ll play this week.
Luke did not clearly answer the question as to whether Corral suffered a setback during the run-up to the Vanderbilt game.
“To say he was going to go out there and run zone read and pull the ball and feel good about getting hit … that’s the challenge,” he said. “As he gets to be 100 percent we’ll continue to look at it.”
In other injury news, wide receiver Braylon Sanders (hamstring) is day to day, and strong safety Jonathan Haynes (ankle) is probable. Both players missed the Vanderbilt game.
Run-heavy RebelsOle Miss ran the ball 44 times on 62 total plays en route to 413 rushing yards against Vandy.
“I don’t really look into it going into a game. It’s whatever you’ve got to do to win,” offensive coordinator Rich Rodriguez said.”Particularly if you’ve got a lead, like we did in the last game, you’re going to shorten the game in the fourth quarter. We don’t have a set plan in any week saying we’re going to throw so many times or run so many times.”
Ole Miss has rushed for 1,406 yards through six games.
The Rebels have rushed for 49.2 percent (692 yards) of that total in the last two weeks.
Ole Miss begins the week second to Georgia in the SEC – and No. 16 nationally – in rushing offense at 234.3 yards a game.
Since rushing for only 80 yards in the season opener at Memphis the Rebels have been held below 200 rushing yards just once and are averaging 265.2 yards a game through five games.
Missouri is No. 3 in the SEC and No. 12 nationally in rushing defense at 88.8 yards per game allowed.
The Tigers gave up 61 rushing yards against Troy on Saturday and have held three opponents to fewer than 50 rushing yards.
About those receivers ...After young receivers Jonathan Mingo and Jadon Jackson made big plays against Alabama the receivers were less a factor against Vanderbilt as Plumlee was 10 for 18 passing.
“We need to find a way to get the receivers involved in different ways especially as people start to load the box,” Luke said.
Elijah Moore led Ole Miss with four catches on four targets for 40 yards against Vanderbilt.