2022 Sugar Bowl Over-Under Preview & Pick
Two of the most popular young coaches in college football will square off in the final New Year’s Six Bowl. Ole Miss’ Lane Kiffin has been one of the best offensive masterminds in the sport over the last decade, while Dave Aranda was a highly respected defensive mind before he became the head coach at Baylor. That interesting clash between offense and defense should make for an entertaining Sugar Bowl.
The 2022 Sugar Bowl will take place on Saturday, January 1, 2022, at 8:45 p.m. ET on ESPN from the Caesars Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana.
College Football Betting Odds
Baylor had its best season since Art Briles left the program. The Bears went 11-2 and won the Big 12 Championship Game thanks to a goal line stand against Oklahoma State. They played excellent defense throughout the year, paving the way towards one of the more special seasons in program history.
The Mississippi Rebels were 10-0 outside the state of Alabama this year. Ole Miss lost on the road to Alabama and Auburn, but they won the rest of their games. Their wins over Texas A&M and Mississippi State led to them playing in a New Year’s Six Bowl, making them the third SEC team to make it to one of the six most prestigious bowl games this year.
When Baylor Has the Ball
The Bears do a great job of running the ball. Abram Smith ran for 1,429 yards (6.2 YPC) and 12 touchdowns in the regular season, while Trestan Ebner ran for 763 yards (5.4 YPC) and two touchdowns. Gerry Bohanon was a real red zone threat too with nine rushing touchdowns.
Bohanon had a nice season under center for Baylor. He completed 64.3% of his passes for 2,160 yards (8.4 YPA) with 17 touchdowns and six interceptions. Tyquan Thornton was his top receiver, averaging 15.5 YPR with nine touchdowns.
Ole Miss was not as bad as it was last year on defense. The Rebels were 42nd in Defensive SP+, and they did a great job of forcing turnovers. Sam Williams was a First Team All-SEC selection with 12.5 sacks.
When Mississippi Has the Ball
Matt Corral had a great season for Ole Miss. He will be entering the NFL Draft after the Sugar Bowl, but he has decided to put on the shoulder pads one last time for his alma mater. Corral has completed 68.4% of his passes for 3,339 yards with 20 touchdowns and four interceptions, and he has run for 597 yards and 11 touchdowns.
The Rebels have run for almost 2,700 yards and are averaging 5.0 YPC. Four different players have run for at least 500 yards, as Jerrion Ealy leads Mississippi with 703 yards while Snoop Conner has found the end zone 13 times. Dontario Drummond has had a great season, but the entire receiving corps is talented and explosive.
Baylor ranks 16th in Defensive SP+. The Bears are allowing just 20.2 PPG, and defensive back Jalen Pitre was the Defensive Player of the Year. Siaki Ika was a force to be reckoned with up front, so the Bears can potentially disrupt this offense.
We could see a lot of points in this game. Ole Miss prevents a different challenge than what Baylor has seen all year, and the Bears can run the ball on this front seven.