GAMEDAY PREVIEW: Ole Miss At Mississippi State

OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM Donte Moncrief
OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM
Donte Moncrief
OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM

Nov. 28, 2013

Gameday Central | Scouting Report | Live Stats | Twitter Updates

TV Network: ESPN | Ole Miss Radio Network (Sirius, XM)

Monday Blog:First Look At The Egg Bowl

Wednesday Blog: Battling The Elements Thursday Night

STARKVILLE, Miss. — The Egg Bowl returns to Thanksgiving for the first time since 2003, as Ole Miss closes out the regular season tonight at Mississippi State in the annual Battle for the Golden Egg at 6:30.

One of the most historic and greatest rivalries in college football, the Ole Miss-Mississippi State series is tied for the 15th-longest in NCAA Division I history.

The Rebels (7-4, 3-4 Southeastern Conference) are bowl eligible for the second straight year under Hugh Freeze and look to keep the Egg Bowl trophy in Oxford. The Bulldogs (5-6, 2-5) are coming off a 24-17 overtime win at Arkansas and look to become bowl eligible with a win tonight.

“The Egg Bowl intensity is always going to be as high as you get in a given game,” Freeze said. “Certainly with them having to win to go to a bowl like we were last year, if it’s possible to ratchet it up a little more, that’s something that would do it if it’s possible. You don’t have to have that to make this game feel emotional. But if there’s anything that would make it more it would be those factors.”

“I know they're going to play hard against us,” junior quarterback Bo Wallace said. “Their backs are against the wall. We know how that feels. They’re in the same situation as we were last year. They’re going to come out and play, so we have to be ready for them.”

Wallace, a Conerly Trophy finalist, ranks third in the SEC in total offense (286.0 yards per game) and fourth in passing (264.4 ypg). In last year’s 41-24 win over Mississippi State in Oxford, Wallace completed 15-of-22 passes for 294 yards and a career-high five touchdowns.

One of Wallace’s favorite targets, junior wide receiver Donte Moncrief, ranks top 10 in the SEC in receiving yards (72.8 ypg), receptions (4.5/game) and receiving touchdowns (5). He also had a big game in last year’s win with seven catches for a career-high 173 yards and three touchdowns.

“They’re a little different than they were last year,” Freeze said of Mississippi State’s coverages. “They will still do some of the same stuff, but the percentages are different.”

“We showed them some looks that we didn’t show earlier in the year,” Wallace said of last year’s meeting. “We will have a few new wrinkles in this week just like every week, and hopefully we will able to score some points on them.”

For Mississippi State, sophomore quarterback Dak Prescott ranks fifth in the SEC in total yards (251.6 yards per game) and leads the team in both passing (171.3 yards per game) and rushing (80.2 ypg).

However, Prescott has missed the last two games due to injury and could be out again this week. Freshman quarterback Damian Williams, who is 14-of-27 for 186 yards with an interception this year, is listed as the starter on this week’s depth chart. Williams also scored the game-winning touchdown with a 25-yard scamper in last week’s win over Arkansas.

“I know they have been resting Dak, and the other two have played in the last few games,” Freeze said. “I saw where Tyler (Russell) left the game last weekend at the end. I don't know what the significance of that is. We have to prepare for all three I think. Fortunately, two of the three are very similar and do the same things, and the other is still similar. They are like watching us on film. They do most of the same stuff that we do. You don’t like not knowing, but that’s the situation we’re in, so we have to prepare for all three.”

On the defensive side of the ball, Ole Miss junior safety Cody Prewitt is tied for the SEC lead and tied for eighth nationally with five interceptions, including one last week against Missouri. He leads the team in tackles (66), interceptions (5) and passes defended (11).

“They want to run the football and then play-action pass, just like our offense does,” defensive coordinator Dave Wommack said. “It’s an advantage for us, and both defenses, because we get to see this type of thing all the time. We have to prepare for it all.”

In preparation for tonight’s game in Davis Wade Stadium, Ole Miss had cowbell sounds, along with the usual loud music for road games, piped into practice in the Manning Center.

“We better get used to that,” Freeze said. “I’m not sure how that process is going there with the regulations that they have on them. I’m certain in this game we will hear some.”

“It’s kind of difficult, but once you get used to it, you block it out,” said junior linebacker Serderius Bryant, who leads the team with three sacks and nine tackles for loss. “Sometimes on the field, I don’t really hear anything, but I feel like Mississippi State has one of the loudest crowds in the SEC. The cowbells just makes it worse.”

This is the 110th meeting all-time between Ole Miss and Mississippi State. The Rebels hold a 61-42-6 advantage in the series dating back to 1901. Thursday’s game will be the 86th “Battle of the Golden Egg” dating back to 1927. The Rebels have a 55-25-5 advantage in the “Egg Bowl,” including last year’s 41-24 win.

Ole Miss Gear
    Facebook
    Twitter
    • Loading Tweets...
      1 second ago
    Blog
    • Rebels Ahead of Schedule in Year Three

      Thursday, November 20, 2014 - Football

      It's sometimes easy to forget where the Ole Miss football program was just three short years ago, when Hugh Freeze was interviewing for the head coaching position. The Rebels had won just two games in 2011 and had lost 14... read more

    • Ole Miss Athletics Week in Review (Nov. 10-16, 2014)

      Monday, November 17, 2014 - Athletics

      Ole Miss Athletics Week in ReviewNov. 10-16, 2014Women's Basketball- The Ole Miss women's basketball team opened up the 2014-15 season with two wins over the weekend. The Rebels took down Grambling 92-67 in the season opener on Friday and followed... read more

    • Observations from the Best Seat in the House -- Nov. 16

      Sunday, November 16, 2014 - Athletics

      The Ole Miss football team was off, but it was a busy week in Ole Miss athletics nevertheless, as the men's and women's basketball teams opened their respective seasons. Here are some thoughts and opinions on the week that was:-... read more

    • Getting Healthy, Staying Sharp on the Bye Week

      Friday, November 14, 2014 - Football

      No. 10 Ole Miss was without several starters and regular contributors against Presbyterian, and many others were limited.  But given an extra week of rest, head coach Hugh Freeze said he expects everyone, with the exception of the players out... read more

    • The Season: Ole Miss Football Episode 11

      Wednesday, November 12, 2014 - Football

      The Season: Ole Miss Football - Episode 11 - Presbyterian (2014) from Ole Miss Rebels on Vimeo.... read more

    • Ole Miss Athletics Week in Review (Nov. 3-9, 2014)

      Monday, November 10, 2014 - Athletics

      Ole Miss Athletics Week in ReviewNov. 3-9, 2014Football- Ole Miss took a break from the rugged Southeastern Conference and earned a 48-0 shutout win over Presbyterian on Saturday.- It was the Rebels' first shutout since beating Tulane 39-0 in 2012.-... read more

    • Observations from the Best Seat in the House - Nov. 9

      Sunday, November 9, 2014 - Football

      Austin Miller handled all of this week's edition of the Observations from the Best Seat in the House. Check out what he had to say below:- The nation's best scoring defense finally got its first shutout of the season, as... read more

    • Wilkins, Dodson Shine in Blowout Win

      Saturday, November 8, 2014 - Football

      Ole Miss racked up the second-most yards in school history, totaling 640 yards, including 402 yards on the ground, in a 48-0 rout of Presbyterian. The Rebels were able to limit the reps for several players in the contest, with... read more

    • Three and Out: Keys to Ole Miss-PC

      Saturday, November 8, 2014 - Football

      Three areas to watch as No. 11 Ole Miss hosts FCS opponent Presbyterian in its final non-conference matchup of the regular season. Execute, Stay Heathy Saturday's game with Presbyterian is more about Ole Miss than its opponent, as the team's... read more

    • Injuries Create Opportunities for Young Players

      Thursday, November 6, 2014 - Football

      With injuries mounting on both sides of the ball, Saturday's game against Presbyterian presents an opportunity for young players and backups to gain experience and make an impression on the coaching staff. Among those injured players, head coach Hugh Freeze... read more

    • The Season: Ole Miss Football Episode 10

      Wednesday, November 5, 2014 - Football

      The Season: Ole Miss Football - Episode 10 - Auburn (2014) from Ole Miss Rebels on Vimeo.... read more

    • Path To Atlanta: A Little Homecookin'

      Monday, November 3, 2014 - Football

      A question we keep hearing is what needs to happen in order for the Rebels to get to the SEC Championship game. It's pretty simple, just cheer for the home team. The lone exception to that notion is Ole Miss'... read more

    • Ole Miss Athletics Week in Review (Oct. 27-Nov. 2, 2014)

      Monday, November 3, 2014 - Athletics

      Ole Miss Athletics Week in ReviewOct. 27-Nov. 2, 2014Football- No. 4 Ole Miss lost a heartbreaker to No. 3 Auburn on Saturday night, 35-31.- In addition to losing the game, the Rebels lost star receiver Laquon Treadwell on what looked... read more

    • Observations from the Best Seat in the House -- Nov. 2

      Sunday, November 2, 2014 - Athletics

      In this week's edition of Observations from the Best Seat in the House, Metz Camfield and I teamed up to give you our thoughts and opinions of the week that was in Ole Miss athletics. There's a lot on our... read more

    • Rebels Look to Move on in Face of Adversity

      Saturday, November 1, 2014 - Football

      Dragging an Auburn defender on what initially looked to be a go-ahead touchdown, Laquon Treadwell fought his way toward the end zone, but had his ankle rolled over and fumbled into the end zone. In the moments that followed, the... read more