Mississippi took advantage of Tide miscues, a Rebel interception followed by a busted defensive assignment began what eventually ballooned to a 24-0 deficit after the first quarter, leaving little time for the Crimson Tide to establish the run.
"There really wasn't much talking after the game," he said. "Everybody was so mad at how our performance was. They came out and jumped on us quick. We were down on ourselves at half, and we got in the locker room and Coach tried to go over stuff. We came back pumped up and we just couldn't get anything going."
Ray Hudson is part of a three-headed monster leading this year's ground attack that includes himself, Kenneth Darby and Tim Castille. The senior from Bonifay, Florida carried for 11 yards on the Tide's second play from scrimmage in 2004, and finished the day with 111 yards on 16 carries. Sophomore Darby, who had an impressive 41-yard run against the Rebels a year ago (suffering an injury on the same play, also had 111 yards in the opener. Castille had nine runs for 45 yards.
"We executed well against different things," Hudson said. "They started changing their schemes from what we had practiced, but we got on the drawing board at halftime and we executed."
Hudson said he was comfortable with the subbing in and out, and said it will help him endure throughout the season. But the key everyone getting enough carries, Head Coach Mike Shula said, is to run efficiently on every play.
"If we stay on the field those guys can get carries," Shula said, "but if we don't make first downs then none of them can get in a groove."
Hudson is up to the challenge of running against a physically more imposing squad that Utah State. "The better the team we play the harder we're going to run. It was just a first game." Hudson relishes the first Southeastern Conference test coming from a squad that beat the Tide soundly a year ago.
"The way they beat us last year left a bitter taste everybody's mouth," Hudson said. "I can't wait till Saturday."