Rebels and Tigers collide in Oxford this Saturday

Published: Oct. 25, 2016 at 11:18 PM CDT|Updated: Oct. 26, 2016 at 5:04 PM CDT
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AUBURN, AL (WSFA) - Friends reunited: The famous SEC West pals of Gus Malzahn and Hugh Freeze forget the friendship on Saturday when the two face off in Oxford.

"A very talented Ole Miss team. They play extremely well at home. They played Alabama closer than anybody, they beat Georgia by 31 points."

Coach Malzahn said it was very important to him to reiterate to his players this week that Ole Miss's 3 and 4 record isn't exactly a good indication of how talented they really are. "I mean they're one of the top groups in our league," he explained.

One of the biggest questions heading into the year for the Auburn Tigers was the running back depth. Now former Prattville star Kamryn Pettway (aka Bubba) is carrying the load for an injured Kerryon Johnson and being compared to NFL great Jerome Bettis.

"Even in Prattville I thought he had good vision running the football and he got his opportunity this year. Once he breaks through that first level it's really a challenge to tackle him one on one at least high," explained Malzahn.

When asked about Pettway, wide receiver teammate Tony Stevens laughed and said, "He's like 240. I ain't seen no running back like that since like Jerome Bettis. That's who he reminds me of Jerome Bettis. The way he cut or run you over so you never know what you're gonna get when you head up with him."

The 15th ranked Auburn Tigers are on a hot streak where the Rebels fall out of the polls for the first time in 13 straight weeks.

Gus Malzahn says, "We're still green now. We're still playing some guys out there that still need some more experience. I mean we haven't arrived. There's a lot of areas that we still need to improve on but we gotta keep working we gotta keep improving and that's our mindset."

Kickoff is set for 6:15 p.m. at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium in Mississippi.

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