BILOXI, MS (WLOX) -
The 2014 Egg Bowl game is the 111th meeting of one of the nation's most played rivalries. Ole Miss is 61-43-6 in the rivalry that dates back to 1901.
The game is a battle for bragging rights, but for No. 4 Mississippi State (10-1, 6-1 SEC), a victory over No. 18 Ole Miss(8-3, 4-3 SEC) would keep the Bulldogs in the running for the SEC West Division title. An Auburn upset win over No. 1 Alabama Saturday night would secure the SEC West Division championship for Mississippi State and trip to the SEC Championship game on December 6 in the Georgia Dome in Atlanta.
Mississippi State head coach Dan Mullen said,"It's such a big deal to everybody. We're always in lock-down mode here. So I don't get to see much of it outside of this building. We let our guys go home for Thanksgiving to spend time with family. With school finishing up on Tuesday, we kind of tweak our schedule around. We end up being in here a lot earlier in the week. So we don't really get out all that much. We get all of our work done early so our guys can go have Thanksgiving with their families.”
Ole Miss head coach Hugh Freeze knows his players are somewhat down after losing three of the last four games including a 30-0 setback to Arkansas on Saturday. Freeze said,"I think they have a clear understanding of what this game means to so many. I expect us to have a great week of preparation and getting ready to play this in the Vaught come Saturday."
Under Mullen Mississippi State is 4-1 in Egg Bowl games. Last season quarterback Dak Prescott didn't start the game due to injuries, but he came off the bench and guided the Bulldogs to a thrilling 17-10 overtime win over the Rebels.
Prescott said,"I was fighting it the whole game [the urge to play]. Damian [Williams] was doing such a good job. I figured he was going to make a play to help us win the game. Emotions got to me, and I wanted to go in. I told [head] coach [Dan] Mullen I was ready to play. He went with me, and I just remember the stadium and atmosphere. It was a great game.”
Prescott says he knows Ole Miss has a good football team and Mississippi State must be prepared for another hard fought Egg Bowl game.
“The records don't matter. It doesn't matter who has the better record. It wouldn't matter if we were ranked one and two. This game is just special. We're going to come in and play with emotions and from the heart. It's a good rivalry, and it's great to be a part of it. You have rivalries inside of households. You have two kids, one going to Mississippi State and one going to Ole Miss. It just means so much to the state of Mississippi. Everybody is buzzing on social media. It's big, and it bring that much more of a feeling to the nasty and good rivalry this is.”
Ole Miss quarterback Bo Wallace sprained his ankle in Saturday's loss to Arkansas. Coach Freeze says Wallace will be in the lineup come Saturday. He says Bo won't sit this game out.