Mississippi quarterback Matt Corral (2) passes against Arkansas during the first half of their NCAA college football game, Saturday, Sept. 7, 2019, in Oxford, Miss. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)

Ole Miss Trounces Louisville in Season Opener

In the final game of College Football’s opening week, the Ole Miss Rebels defeated the Louisville Cardinals by a score of 43-24.

Quarterback and preseason Hesiman hopeful Matt Coral led his team to a 26-0 halftime lead.  Although Louisville turned in an admirable second half performance, it was far too little too late.

Heisman Watch at Ole Miss?

When Lane Kiffin started at Ole Miss, he gave then redshirt sophomore Matt Corral the keys to his high powered offense.  Prior to Kiffin, the former four star ESPN Top 300 recruit was yet to have a coach trust and unleash him.  His potential was obvious, but the red flags were also glaring.

In his first year under the coaching of Kiffin, Corral threw for 3337 yards and 29 touchdowns while completing 70% of his passes.  He showed flashes at times, such as against South Carolina when he threw for 513 yards and four touchdowns.  He also demonstrated reasons for concern, such as when he threw 6 interceptions against Arkansas.

All things considered, Corral entered the 2021 season a Heisman hopeful.  He did not disappoint in week one.  Corral threw for 381 yards and a touchdown while also adding another via the ground.

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Corral was the victim of a vicious targeting call that left fans holding their breath.  Fortunately, he was ok.  If he is able to remain healthy and lead Ole Miss to a successful season, a Heisman trophy and high draft grade is very possible for the young gunslinger.

Forward or Backward

The 2021 season is pivotal for the Louisville Cardinals.  Head Coach Scott Satterfield took over the team following their 2-10 2018 campaign.  The next year, he led them to an impressive 8-5 record and earned ACC Coach of the Year honors.  As a result, the team was expected to take another leap in 2020.  Unfortunately, they sputtered and went 4-7.  This clouded their expectations for 2021 and left many wondering, what direction the program is heading?  That said, their performance against Ole Miss was not a positive indication.

In addition to Satterfield, starting quarterback Malik Cunningham has also had a shaky tenure with the Cardinals.  In 2019, he threw for 2065 yards with 22 touchdowns and five interceptions.  Last year, he took at step back and although he threw for 2617 yards, he only had 20 touchdowns to go along with 12 interceptions.  Now, in 2021, Cunningham needs to solidify himself.  Doing little to help or hurt himself, he threw for 191 yards along with a touchdown and an interception against Ole Miss.

What’s Next?

Next week, Louisville has a home game against Eastern Kentucky.  Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.  Ole Miss has a home game against Austin Peay.  Kickoff is slated for 7:30 p.m.

About William Silverman

William Silverman is a junior at the University of Florida from Philadelphia who is interested in pursuing a career in business, communications and journalism.

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