Can Ole Miss compete in the SEC West without Matt Corral as their QB? Or will Lane Kiffin’s team struggle in 2022?
The Rebels first year under Lane Kiffin was a middle of the pack season after finishing 5-5. Then Ole Miss took a huge leap and finished 10-3 last season. Now Lane Kiffin has the task of renewing his high powered offense but now he has no Matt Corral at QB, no top running backs, and no top receivers from last year. However, Lane Kiffin has quite the recruiting prowess and managed to bring in Jaxson Dart from USC to play quarterback as well as eight other top-100 transfer portal players.
Kiffins Rebels are going to be a dark horse favorite for me in 2022. They have the pieces to have another ten-win season but could easily slip to middle of the pack. If Kiffin can get his transfer players ready for SEC football, keep an eye on the Rebels in the SEC West. That being said, let’s take a look at the Ole Miss 2022 schedule.
Week One, Home Game vs Troy
The Rebels open the 2022 season with a non-conference game against the Troy Trojans. Troy went 5-7 last year and the only positive piece returing is star linebacker Carlton Martial. But as far as Ole Miss is concerned, one player does not beat an entire team, especially an SEC team. This will be a comfortable win for the Rebels to open up the season.
Score Prediction: Ole Miss 48, Troy 7
Week Two, Home Game vs Central Arkansas
The non-conference schedule continues in week two with the Central Arkansas Bears coming to town. Back in 2019, the Bears won their conference title but finished a measely 5-6 in 2021. Here is the truth though, Ole Miss does not care what Central Arkansas did back in 2019. Ole Miss will cruise to yet another easy win and this game will be over by the end of the first quarter.
Score Prediction: Ole Miss 56, Central Arkansas 7
Week Three, Away Game vs Georgia Tech
Ole Miss will continue their non-conference schedule with an away game versus Georgia Tech in week three. Georgia Tech has lost pretty much all of their productive players and have gone 9-25 since 2018. Tech lost their star running back to Alabama via the transfer portal and their best defensive lineman is now suiting up for Ole Miss. I will keep this simple for you, Ole Miss wins this one by a bunch and comfortably stays unbeaten.
Score Prediction: Ole Miss 48, Georgia Tech 17
Week Four, Home Game vs Tulsa
The Rebels non-conference schedule ends with a home game against the Tulsa Golden Hurricane. Tulsa finished 7-6 last year but now have to rebuild without their leading rusher and leading wide receiver. That being said, Tulsa can hang around maybe for a quarter and a half but this will be another Ole Miss win in the end. Look for the Rebels to give their starters another week of rest in the second half.
Score Prediction: Ole Miss 48, Tulsa 21
Week Five, Home Game vs Kentucky
Conference play begins in week five with the Kentucky Wildcats coming to town. Despite losing Matt Corral, head coach Lane Kiffin can make any offense great. That being said, with Kentucky and Ole Miss needing these big games, both will have to rely on the offense to not turn the ball over.
That being said, Ole Miss is still going to be a problem in the SEC West and Kentucky will struggle in this one. I think it will be a close game but the tougher versions of SEC teams will win this game. Turnovers will be killer but Ole Miss gets it done late.
Score Prediction: Ole Miss 31, Kentucky 28
Week Six, Away Game vs Vanderbilt
Vandy has an insane conference schedule in 2022 including a home game hosting Kiffins squad. Sure the Rebels are going to be a different team without Matt Corral but I cannot imagine a steep falloff. If Kiffin can find the right replacement for what Corral was in Jaxson Dart, they will have no issues here. Vanderbilt can compete for most of this game but are still too far below the level of competing against the Rebels.
Score Prediction: Ole Miss 34, Vanderbilt 17
Week Seven, Home Game vs Auburn
The Rebels continue conference play hosting the Auburn Tigers in week seven. Auburn has had at least 15 players transfer out of the program. They also had their offensive coordinator leave only weeks after taking the job. This Auburn team is going to struggle in 2022 and they need to start the rebuild quickly. Give me the Rebels to control this game from the start and never look back.
Score Prediction: Ole Miss 34, Auburn 20
Week Eight, Away Game vs LSU
Here is where the Rebels schedule gets ugly and rough with a road trip to Death Valley in week eight. Brian Kelly is now the head coach for the Tigers and he is looking to get them back to a national title. However, they have to find their identity first much like Ole Miss and that is what will make this game interesting. Two teams looking to return to double digit wins and much more.
Unfortunately, I think LSU hands the Rebels their first loss of the season. LSU will have their roster figured out and be able to defend Death Valley. This will be a game that comes down to a game winning score and LSU will be the team with that score.
Score Prediction: LSU 28, Ole Miss 24
Week Nine, Away Game vs Texas A&M
The tough stretch of the Rebels schedule with another road game, this time against Texas A&M in their house. A&M is going to be a contender for a CFP spot so beating them in their house will be tough. The Aggies did lose four all-SEC players but this being a home game is the difference here. WIth the leftover athletes at A&M, the Aggies get it done and hand the Rebels their second loss in a row.
Score Prediction: Texas A&M 34, Ole Miss 31
Week Ten, Home Game vs Alabama
After a tough couple of road trips, the Rebels then get to return home and host Alabama. Ole Miss gave the Tide a scare last year and I see no reason for Bama to not be worried to lose again. However, Bama reloaded on recruits and kept some key veterans unlike Ole Miss and that is the difference here. A high-scoring game will be the result here but the Tide will come out on top.
Score Prediction: Alabama 48, Ole Miss 42
Week Eleven, Away Game vs Arkansas
Lane Kiffin and company then head back on the road in week 11 and this time it is a trip to Fayetteville. The Razorbacks lost a few of their talented receivers and defensive players. However, the Razorbacks defend their home turf well especially if this game is the one that decides their fate in the postseason. As bad as I want to pick Ole Miss, I like Arkansas to defend their home turf here. This will be a close one that breaks Ole Miss’s heart.
Score Prediction: Arkansas 35, Ole Miss 28
Week Twelve, Home Game vs Mississippi State
The final game of the season for the Rebels is a home game against the Mississippi State Bulldogs. The 2022 version of the Egg Bowl features the fast paced Rebels and the air raid Bulldogs. Mississippi State returned quite a few big impact players. This will be a tough game for both teams but the Rebels getting this game at home will help immensely. Give me the Rebels in a tough Egg Bowl battle for the ages with Ole miss coming out on top.
Score Prediction: Ole Miss 35, Mississippi State 31
Final Record For Ole Miss Football In 2022-23: 8-4 (4-4)
The Rebels are going to be good enough to get a solid bowl game this year. They are also going to be good enough to prove me wrong and win at least ten games. If they can find their groove they could upset some of the bigger contenders this year. It will all come down to what version of Kiffins fast paced offensive scheme shows up. I hope the Rebels prove me wrong and do better than 8-4.
Which SEC team will improve the most in 2022? Comment below and join the discussion!
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