Tide rolls through Ole Miss, 59-31

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TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) – Tua Tagovailoa and DeVonta Smith hooked up for five touchdown passes and a few school records while No. 2 Alabama ran away from Mississippi 59-31 on Saturday.

The Crimson Tide (5-0, 2-0 Southeastern Conference) actually trailed for the first time this season before flexing its muscles against the 37 1/2-point underdogs. The Rebels (2-3, 1-1) couldn’t even slow down Smith, who sometimes gets overshadowed in a loaded receiving group.

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Not this game. Smith had 11 catches for school records of 274 yards and five TDs, all by early in the third quarter. He had 221 yards by halftime, and added a 27-yard score to punctuate the biggest game of any Tide receiver.

Tagovailoa passed for a school-record six touchdowns and rushed for a seventh. He had matched the record of five TD passes in two straight games but finally eclipsed it in the fourth quarter.

He completed 26 of 36 passes for 418 yards.

It wasn’t all smooth sailing for the Tide, even with a blocked punt for a touchdown tossed in.

Ole Miss turned a muffed punt into a score and then took a 10-7 lead on Luke Logan’s 33-yard field goal. Alabama’s first deficit of the season lasted 3: 44.

Then Alabama scored 31 points in the second quarter.

The Rebels started backup quarterback John Rhys Plumlee with Matt Corral sidelined with bruised ribs sustained in a loss to California.

Plumlee passed for two touchdowns and ran for a third. He finished 10-of-28 passing for 141 yards with an interception, and ran 25 times for 109 yards.

TUA’S RECORD WATCH

Tagovailoa’s touchdown run in the second quarter was the 81st TD passing and rushing of his career, passing AJ McCarron for the school record. He also ultimately tied McCarron’s 77 scoring passes.

REICHARD OUT

Former starting kicker Joseph Bulovas replaced an injured Will Reichard (hip flexor). Bulovas made a 36-yard field goal and hit the right upright on a 28-yarder.

THE TAKEAWAY

Mississippi: Rebounded from a tough loss to Cal by starting 4 of 5 on third-down conversions. Had 476 total yards and 279 on the ground against the Tide.

Alabama: Had some struggles defensively but the offense produced even more big plays than usual. Ale Kaho both blocked and recovered the punt for a touchdown.

UP NEXT

Mississippi hosts Vanderbilt Saturday night.

Alabama gets its first open date before visiting No. 23 Texas A&M on Oct. 12.

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Angela joined the News 12 team in November of 2017 as the weekend sports anchor and reporter. Angela is a proud member of an Army family, which means she has hometowns all over the Eastern Seaboard. Most recently, she calls Peachtree City, Georgia, home, where she graduated from Trinity Christian School and spent her free time driving her purple golf cart. She then headed to Milledgeville, Georgia, to attend Georgia College and State University. A proud Bobcat, Angela graduated Summa Cum Laude with a BA in Mass Communication and represented her December 2016 class as one of three valedictorians. Angela comes to the Scenic City from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, where she worked at the NBC affiliate, WMBF News. Before the big move, she worked as Georgia College's Sports Information Assistant, which let her get paid to be the Bobcats' biggest fan. It all started in Savannah, Georgia, though, where she interned for SAV's number one station, WTOC. When she's not working, you can find Angela watching the New York Giants, Rangers or basically any other game that's on. She also loves traveling, hiking and exploring new places, all with her camera in hand. If you have any story ideas, big or small, feel free to reach out to her on Facebook and Twitter, or email her at amoryan@wdef.com."