Dart rallies No. 20 Ole Miss past No. 24 Tulane, 37-20

Tulane running back Makhi Hughes (21) carries in the first half of an NCAA college football...
Tulane running back Makhi Hughes (21) carries in the first half of an NCAA college football game against Mississippi in New Orleans, Saturday, Sept. 9, 2023. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)(Gerald Herbert | AP)
Published: Sep. 9, 2023 at 6:28 PM CDT
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NEW ORLEANS (AP) - Jaxson Dart accounted for 308 yards and passed for two touchdowns and No. 20 Mississippi pulled away to beat 24th-ranked Tulane 37-20 on Saturday as injured Green Wave quarterback Michael Pratt watched from the sideline.

Caden Davis kicked a career-long 56-yard field goal to give Ole Miss (2-0) a 10-point lead with 1:53 left, and defensive end Jared Ivey picked up a fumble caused by Khari Coleman’s sack and returned it 26 yards for a touchdown.

Dart passed for passed for 267 yards and rushed for 41.

After Tulane coach Willie Fritz said Tuesday that Pratt was “fine,” the coach elected to start backup Kai Horton. Pratt, who had taken a big hit at the end of a 37-17 victory over South Alabama the previous weekend was wearing shorts with a protective sleeve on his left knee when he appeared on the sideline.

Still, Tulane (1-1) took a 10-point lead in the first half, after falling behind early in the fourth, was on the edge of tying field goal range. But Fritz elected to run an offensive play on fourth and 2 from the 31 and Horton was forced out of bounds just short.

On the next play, Dart found Dayton Wade for a 43-yard catch as the receiver twisted in the air and landed on his back. That set up Dart’s 21-yard, fourth-down scoring pass to Michael Trigg to make it 27-17 with 4:28 left.

Horton, who’d come off the bench to lead a dramatic overtime victory at Houston last season, looked ready to step in early on. He connected with Lawrence Keys for a 57-yard completion that set up Makhi Hughes’ short TD run to tie the game at 7 on Tulane’s opening series.

Horton’s accurate throw to Jha’Quan Jackson 41 yards down field went for a touchdown that gave the Wave a 17-7 lead in the second quarter.

Ole Miss rallied to score the next 20 points.

The Rebels parlayed a fourth-down stop on their own 35 into a 65-yard touchdown drive, capped by Quinshon Judkins’ tackle-slipping 9-yard run, tying it at 17 with 6:11 left in the third quarter.

After the teams traded interceptions by Tulane’s Lance Robinson and Mississippi’s Deantre Prince late in the third quarter, the Rebels drove for Davis’ 27-yard field goal and a 20-17 lead.

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