Ole Miss quarterback Jaxson Dart Oct 1, 2022; Oxford, Mississippi, USA; Kentucky Wildcats quarterback Will Levis (7) scrambles in the back field as Mississippi Rebels defensive end Tavius Robinson (95) attempts to make the tackle during the second quarter at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Petre Thomas-USA TODAY Sports

Ole Miss coach Lane Kiffin criticized the team’s fans this week for not coming out to games and being supportive.

Kiffin had nothing to complain about Saturday, as a boisterous home crowd turned out to watch No. 14 Ole Miss upset No. 7 Kentucky, 22-19, to remain unbeaten at 5-0.

“I’ve never played in a game this big and in front of a crowd like this,” Ole Miss quarterback Jaxson Dart said afterward. “I’ll never forget it.”

The game remained in doubt until the final minute, as Kentucky (4-1) appeared ready to take the lead. In fact, the Wildcats scored what appeared to be the go-ahead TD only to have it called back on a penalty. At the very least, a field goal after that would have tied the score. But Rebels defensive end Jared Ivy stripped the ball from Kentucky quarterback Will Levis on the next play to seal the victory.

Defensive coordinator Chris Partridge’s reaction to that game-clinching turnover is priceless.

Just days after Kiffin complained about the Ole Miss home crowds being too listless, fans at this game turned up their intensity level. (Some took it too far, as a brawl between fraternity members broke out in the grandstands.)

Yet this day belonged to Kiffin and the Ole Miss players. Just one season after Kiffin led the team to its first-ever 10-win campaign, Ole Miss appears on its way to reaching that mark once again.

Twitter toasted the Rebels’ — and their fans’ — efforts Saturday.

About Arthur Weinstein

Arthur spends his free time traveling around the U.S. to sporting events, state and national parks, and in search of great restaurants off the beaten path.