In the second half, Georgia gave the ball to Sanks and Haynes play after play, daring the Mississippi defense to stop the two power backs. Ole Miss rarely answered the challenge. Georgia scored the first 28 points of the second half, dominating the game while outrushing the Rebels 268-28.
Haynes' 192 yards was the most for a Georgia back since Garrison Hearst ran for 246 yards against Vanderbilt in 1992. Haynes had touchdown runs of 13 and 26 yards. Sanks added 50 yards rushing on 10 carries with a 1-yard touchdown run.
Georgia's total of 268 yards rushing was its most since gaining 289 yards on the ground against Kent State in 1998.
"The backs they had were unreal,'' said Ole Miss cornerback Syniker Taylor. They were fast, strong and powerful. We kept hitting them, but they kept on running.''
Haynes started at tailback for Musa Smith, who was held out with a groin injury. Smith was in uniform but did not play.
Georgia already knew Smith could prosper as a workhorse back. He rushed for 144 yards against Ole Miss last season and opened this season with 158 yards against Arkansas State.
The surprise was that Haynes, normally the starting fullback, could carry the offense. His previous season high was 86 yards rushing on 14 carries against Kentucky, but he had not rushed for more than 25 yards in any other game this year.
"(Ole Miss) was playing more lenient against the run, and we exploited it,'' Haynes said. "I think they knew we were hurt a little bit at tailback and they were going to put more people on the perimeter (on pass defense).''
That was bad strategy as Haynes, Sanks and fullback Wall (seven carries for 23 yards) gained most of their yards running straight at the defense.
"Everything happens for a reason,'' Haynes said. "When your number is called, you have to step up and make big plays. My number was called today and I was able to do it, no credit to me. Give credit to my line and J.T. Wall.''
Richt said that he should have leaned more heavily on the run in the first half.
"I was not patient enough (calling run plays),'' Richt said. "I have to learn patience.''
But after a quick halftime check of the stats, which showed his running backs had rarely been stopped, Richt made the call.
"(Richt) came in at halftime and told me and Verron to get ready,'' Sanks said. "He said ‘We're getting ready to run the football.' ''
Haynes, who opened the game as the starting tailback, had 14 of Georgia's 18 carries in the half. His 79 yards rushing in the half included a 23-yarder. Georgia ran the ball 31 times in the second half, finishing with 49 rushes for 268 yards and three touchdowns.
In their return to old-school football, Georgia earned passing grades with their running game.
Charles Odum can be reached at CEOdum@aol.com.