Scores

Final

Tennessee 17

(5-5, 2-4 SEC)

Ole Miss 42

(7-3, 3-3 SEC)

Coverage: CBS

12:00 PM ET, November 14, 2009

Vaught-Hemingway Stadium, Oxford, MS

1 2 3 4 T
TENN 7 7 3 017
MISS 14 7 7 1442

Top Performers

Passing: J. Crompton (TENN) - 176 YDS, 2 TD

Rushing: D. McCluster (MISS) - 25 CAR, 282 YDS, 4 TD

Receiving: D. Moore (TENN) - 5 REC, 69 YDS, 1 TD

McCluster sets two school records as Ole Miss runs over Tennessee

Associated Press

OXFORD, Miss. -- Dexter McCluster says being 5-foot-9 and 170 pounds has its advantages on the football field.

Running Rebel

Ole Miss running back Dexter McCluster had a banner day against Tennessee, posting the fourth-best rushing total in the SEC in the last 20 years.

Most Rush Yards SEC Game,
Last 20 Seasons
Year Player Opponent Yards
'07 Darren McFadden, ARK South Carolina 321
'95 Moe Williams, UK South Carolina 299
'96 Shaun Alexander, ALA LSU 291
'09 Dexter McCluster, MISS Tennessee 282

No Tennessee defender could argue with the Mississippi standout Saturday.

McCluster rushed for 282 yards and finished with 324 all-purpose yards, setting two Mississippi records, and the Rebels ran over the Volunteers 42-17.

He broke the Rebels' single-game rushing record of 242 by Dou Innocent in 1995. He eclipsed the all-purpose mark of 317 yards by Deuce McAllister in 1999.

"My size works to my advantage," McCluster said. "When they see me, it's too late."

McCluster scored on runs of 15, 23, 32 and 71 yards in Ole Miss' first win against the Volunteers since 1983.

"For 170 pounds he is special," said Ole Miss coach Houston Nutt. "He can make the first one miss. He has game breaking speed. Hs you can see, he won't just run out of bounds on a long run. He'll cut back against the grain and separate to get into the end zone."

It's the most rushing yards given up by the Volunteers. Tennessee had yielded 217 yards to Colorado's Mike Pritchard in 1990 and Alabama's Bobby Humphrey in 1986.

"We didn't have a way to tackle him," Tennessee coach Lane Kiffin said. "He set a school record for rushing yards, and we probably set a record for missed tackles."

Ole Miss (7-3, 3-3 Southeastern Conference) -- off to its best start since 2003 -- clinched bowl eligibility for the second straight year with the victory.

Tennessee (5-5, 2-4) was without three of their celebrated freshmen -- wide receiver Nu'Keese Richardson, safety Janzen Jackson and defensive back Mike Edwards. The trio was arrested early Thursday morning for attempted armed robbery in Knoxville.

McCluster scored his first touchdown just 1:31 into the game and added another with 1:20 left in the opening quarter. His 32-yard scamper came in the third quarter and Ole Miss opened the fourth quarter with McCluster's 71-yarder.

"It was a big challenge to cover him," said Tennessee defensive end Chris Walker. "We had to know where he was at all times and he lines up at wide receiver and he lines up at tailback, so it was really hard to adjust to that."

Brandon Bolden added 46 rushing yards and two touchdowns for the Rebels, who finished with 492 yards of total offense, including 359 on the ground.

It was former Ole Miss coach Ed Orgeron's first return to Oxford since he was fired in November 2007 after three seasons. In his first year at Tennessee as defensive line coach the Vols have improved, but struggled against the Rebels.

Jevan Snead, who was 13 of 20 passes for 133 yards, was sacked only once.

Jonathan Compton finished 20 of 37 for 176 yards and two Tennessee touchdowns. He hit Jeff Cottam with a 16-yard TD in the first quarter and Denarius Moore with a 25-yarder in the second quarter.

But the Vols' offense never got untracked, gaining just 275 yards over all, 99 on the ground. Their only other score was a 27-yard field goal by Daniel Lincoln in the third quarter.

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Team Stat Comparison

 
TENN
MISS
1st Downs1826
Total Yards275492
Passing176133
Rushing99359
Penalties2-204-35
3rd Down Conversions4-137-13
4th Down Conversions0-21-1
Turnovers01
Possession25:4934:11

Passing Leaders

TennesseeC/ATTYDSAVGTDINT
Crompton20/371764.820
Ole MissC/ATTYDSAVGTDINT
Snead13/201336.701

Rushing Leaders

TennesseeCARYDSAVGTDLG
Hardesty14553.9023
Brown6345.7011
Ole MissCARYDSAVGTDLG
McCluster2528211.3471
Bolden11464.2218

Receiving Leaders

TennesseeRECYDSAVGTDLG
Moore56913.8125
Jones5489.6014
Ole MissRECYDSAVGTDLG
Hodge57715.4018
McCluster44210.5017

Scoring Summary

FIRST QUARTERTENNMISS
TD13:29Dexter McCluster 15 Yd Run (Joshua Shene Kick) 07
TD04:42Jeff Cottam 16 Yd Pass From Jonathan Crompton (Daniel Lincoln Kick) 77
TD01:20Dexter McCluster 23 Yd Run (Joshua Shene Kick) 714
SECOND QUARTERTENNMISS
TD10:43Denarius Moore 25 Yd Pass From Jonathan Crompton (Daniel Lincoln Kick) 1414
TD06:59Dexter McCluster 32 Yd Run (Joshua Shene Kick) 1421
THIRD QUARTERTENNMISS
FG11:53Daniel Lincoln 27 Yd 1721
TD01:16Brandon Bolden 1 Yd Run (Joshua Shene Kick) 1728
FOURTH QUARTERTENNMISS
TD13:59Dexter McCluster 71 Yd Run (Joshua Shene Kick) 1735
TD02:31Brandon Bolden 4 Yd Run (Joshua Shene Kick) 1742