2013 Mississippi State Bulldogs football
Liberty Bowl champion
Liberty Bowl, W 44–7 vs. Rice
ConferenceSoutheastern Conference
DivisionWestern Division
2013 record7–6 (3–5 SEC)
Head coach
Offensive coordinatorLes Koenning (5th season)
Offensive schemeSpread (Multiple)
Defensive coordinatorGeoff Collins (3rd season)
Base defense4–3
Home stadiumDavis Wade Stadium (Capacity: 55,082)
← 2012
2014 →
2013 Southeastern Conference football standings
Conf Overall
Team   W   L     W   L  
Eastern Division
No. 5 Missouri x   7 1     12 2  
No. 4 South Carolina   6 2     11 2  
Georgia   5 3     8 5  
No. 24 Vanderbilt   4 4     9 4  
Florida   3 5     4 8  
Tennessee   2 6     5 7  
Kentucky   0 8     2 10  
Western Division
No. 2 Auburn xy$   7 1     12 2  
No. 7 Alabama x%   7 1     11 2  
No. 14 LSU   5 3     10 3  
No. 18 Texas A&M   4 4     9 4  
Mississippi State   3 5     7 6  
Arkansas   0 8     3 9  
Ole Miss*   0 5     1 5  
Championship: Auburn 59, Missouri 42
  • $ – BCS representative as conference champion
  • % – BCS at-large representative
  • x – Division champion/co-champions
  • y – Championship game participant
  • * Ole Miss vacated all wins (except for the Music City Bowl) due to NCAA violations.
Rankings from AP Poll

The 2013 Mississippi State Bulldogs football team represented Mississippi State University in the 2013 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The team was coached by Dan Mullen, who was in fifth season with Mississippi State in the 2013 season. The Bulldogs played their home games at Davis Wade Stadium in Starkville, Mississippi, and competed in the Western Division of the Southeastern Conference (SEC).


August 312:30 p.m.vs. No. 13 Oklahoma State*ABC/ESPN2L 3–2135,874
September 72:30 p.m.Alcorn State*CSSW 51–755,085
September 146:00 p.m.at AuburnESPN2L 20–2485,817
September 216:30 p.m.Troy*
  • Davis Wade Stadium
  • Starkville, MS
SECRNW 62–755,096
October 56:00 p.m.No. 10 LSU
  • Davis Wade Stadium
  • Starkville, MS (rivalry)
ESPNL 26–5957,113
October 126:30 p.m.Bowling Green*dagger
  • Davis Wade Stadium
  • Starkville, MS
SECRNW 21–2055,148
October 246:30 p.m.Kentucky
  • Davis Wade Stadium
  • Starkville, MS
ESPNW 28–2255,102
November 211:21 a.m.at No. 14 South CarolinaSECTVL 16–3482,111
November 92:30 p.m.at No. 11 Texas A&MCBSL 41–5188,504
November 166:45 p.m.No. 1 Alabama
  • Davis Wade Stadium
  • Starkville, MS (rivalry)
ESPNL 7–2057,211
November 2311:21 a.m.at ArkansasSECTVW 24–17 OT45,198
November 286:30 p.m.Ole Miss
  • Davis Wade Stadium
  • Starkville, MS (Egg Bowl)
ESPNW 17–10 OT55,113
December 313:00 p.m.vs. Rice*ESPNW 44–757,846
Schedule Source:[1]

Game summaries

#13 Oklahoma State

See also: Oklahoma State Cowboys football and 2013 Oklahoma State Cowboys football team

Oklahoma State vs. Mississippi State
1 234Total
Bulldogs 3 000 3
Cowboys 0 777 21

The No. 13 Oklahoma State Cowboys have been known more for their offense than their defense. The Cowboys' defense, however, kept Oklahoma State in the game long enough for their offense to wake up against the Mississippi State Bulldogs. J.W. Walsh threw for 135 yards and ran for another 125 and a touchdown to lead Oklahoma State to a 21–3 win over Mississippi State in the Texas Kickoff in Houston's Reliant Stadium.

Walsh finished 18 of 27 after relieving starter Clint Chelf on the Cowboys' third series. Jeremy Smith rushed for 102 yards and two touchdowns on 15 carries for Oklahoma State (1–0), which piled up 432 yards on offense after struggling for most of the first half.

Mississippi State's Tyler Russell finished 10 of 16 for 133 yards before being helped off the field and taken to the locker room in the third quarter after being brought down on a scramble. Dak Prescott replaced Russell, throwing for 89 yards on seven of 17 passing. LaDarius Perkins rushed for 50 yards on 16 carries and caught three passes for 52 yards for the Bulldogs (0–1), which had only 333 yards of offense and had trouble keeping drives going, finishing two of 16 on third down conversions. Oklahoma State's defense also had three sacks and intercepted two Mississippi State passes.

Mississippi State marched down the field in 57 yards on 13 plays taking over six minutes off the clock, but the Bulldogs were only able to get Devon Bell's 40-yard field goal to take a 3–0 lead. Russell was 5 of 7 on the drive for 58 yards. Oklahoma State's offense gained only 67 yards with less than four minutes remaining in the first half before Walsh got going. Walsh worked the quarterback keeper three times for gains of 46 yards down the left sideline, 12 yards down the left sideline to the MSU 3 and capping it off with a 3-yard touchdown run to give the Cowboys a 7–3 lead with 2:16 left in the half. The Bulldogs looked to respond before the half as Jameon Lewis weaved the kickoff return 66 yards to the OSU 34, but a holding penalty and a sack by Tyler Johnson stopped the drive.

OSU continued the offensive momentum in the second half, driving 75 yards in 11 plays to take a 14–3 lead on a Smith 1-yard run with 10:41 left in the third. Smith tacked on a 20-yard touchdown run to begin the fourth quarter to up the lead to 21–3.

Alcorn State

See also: Alcorn State Braves football and 2013 Alcorn State Braves football team

Alcorn State at Mississippi State
1 234Total
Braves 0 007 7
Bulldogs 14 2377 51

Dak Prescott threw for 174 yards and two touchdowns in his first career start and Mississippi State breezed past Alcorn State 51–7. Mississippi State (1–1) didn't use several regular starters, including quarterback Tyler Russell, who suffered a concussion in the Bulldogs' season-opening loss to Oklahoma State. It didn't matter. The Bulldogs led 21–0 by early in the second quarter and 37–0 by halftime. It was the most points in the first half for the program since 1996. Mississippi State's Ashton Shumpert rushed for 98 yards and two touchdowns. Nick Griffin added 54 yards on the ground and a touchdown.

Alcorn State (1–1), which plays in the Football Championship Subdivision, managed just two first downs in the first three quarters. The Braves scored their only touchdown early in the fourth quarter on a 25-yard pass from John Gibbs Jr. to Tollete George.

The 6-foot-2, 230-pound Prescott showed his poise early in the first quarter by converting two straight passes on 4th and 9 for a first down. The first was an 18-yard strike to Joe Morrow, but it was disallowed after officials ruled Alcorn State had called timeout. A sold out Davis Wade Stadium groaned, but Prescott came right back and hit Malcolm Johnson for a 23-yard gain. Two plays later, Prescott burst through the line for an 11-yard touchdown run and a 7–0 lead. The rout was just beginning. Mississippi State outgained Alcorn State 308–30 in total yards on the way to the huge halftime lead. Prescott completed 12 of 19 passes while also rushing for 20 yards and a touchdown. He didn't play in the second half.

The second half started just as lopsided. Brandon Holloway ran the kickoff back 95 yards to Alcorn's 1-yard line, and Mississippi State scored two plays later for a 44–0 lead with 13:57 left in the third quarter. Alcorn State's George finished with four catches for 80 yards and the Braves' only touchdown. Gibbs was 11 of 25 passing for 135 yards, one touchdown and one interception.


See also: Auburn Tigers football and 2013 Auburn Tigers football team

Mississippi State at Auburn
1 234Total
Bulldogs 6 770 20
Tigers 11 337 24

Nick Marshall hit C.J. Uzomah for an 11-yard touchdown with 10 seconds left to lift Auburn to a 24–20 victory over Mississippi State on Saturday night, ending the Tigers' 10-game Southeastern Conference losing streak. Marshall led the Tigers (3–0, 1–0 SEC) down the field with big running and passing plays in easily his best game. The junior-college transfer completed his first five passes for 55 yards in leading Auburn 88 yards over the final 1:56. He then ran 11 yards on 3rd-and-10 before lofting the decisive throw to the right corner of the end zone. The play was reviewed and instant replay officials ruled that the 6-foot-4 tight end, Uzomah, was pushed out of bounds, enabling him to come back.

Subbing for an injured Tyler Russell for a second straight game, quarterback Dak Prescott ran for 133 yards and two touchdowns and passed for 213 for Mississippi State (1–2, 0–1). Russell sustained a concussion in the opener against Oklahoma State.

With the game on the line, Marshall suddenly looked like anything but a guy who's had six weeks to learn an offense. He hit freshman Marcus Davis on three straight passes to cover 29 yards, then had a 17-yarder to Jaylon Denson. He also salvaged short gains with a couple of runs before heading out of bounds. Tre Mason's 3-yard run pushed it to the 11 before Auburn called timeout with 15 seconds left. Marshall was 23-of-34 passing for 339 yards and two touchdowns but was intercepted twice. He passed for just 246 yards and two TDs in his first two games as starter combined. Marshall showed a knack for turning potential miscues into big plays. He dropped the shotgun snap, collected it on the bounce and hit a wide-open Quan Bray downfield for a 76-yard touchdown on the opening drive. Ryan White then hit Brandon Fulse for the two-point conversion. In the third quarter, Marshall caught his own batted pass and raced for a 37-yard gain. The Bulldogs forced the Tigers to settle for Cody Parkey's 47-yard field goal after Jamerson Love tackled Corey Grant for a loss. Parkey also had a 40-yarder and 19-yarder.

The Bulldogs were able to keep in check Auburn tailbacks Corey Grant, Tre Mason and Cameron Artis-Payne, who had been the strength of the offense. Prescott completed 15 of 28 passes and carried 22 times. LaDarius Perkins gained 36 yards after he was one of seven starters held out of a route of FCS team Alcorn State.

Mississippi State coach Dan Mullen gambled on fourth-and-2 from his own 29 late, and Prescott delivered with a 3-yard gain. That enabled the Bulldogs to burn off another two minutes before punting, though they couldn't get another first down. It proved just enough time for the Tigers.

Mississippi State twice forced turnovers in Auburn territory in the second half, but failed to produce points both times.


See also: Troy Trojans football and 2013 Troy Trojans football team

Troy at Mississippi State
1 234Total
Trojans 7 000 7
Bulldogs 10 35710 62

Dak Prescott threw for 233 yards and a touchdown, rushed for 53 yards and two touchdowns and caught a 36-yard touchdown pass to lead Mississippi State over Troy 62–7. Prescott's diverse and efficient performance was matched by Jameon Lewis, who caught a 50-yard touchdown pass, rushed for an 8-yard touchdown and threw the 36-yard touchdown that Prescott caught on a trick play. Prescott was starting just his third career game. The 6-foot-2, 230-pound sophomore completed 13 of 21 passes.

Mississippi State (2–2) led 10–7 after the first quarter, but erupted for 35 points in the second quarter to take a 45–7 halftime lead. Troy (2–2) never recovered from the brutal second quarter. Corey Robinson, who is the NCAA's active leader in career passing yards, completed 15 of 25 passes for just 105 yards, one touchdown and one interception. It was the most points Mississippi State has scored in a game since 1994. The Bulldogs finished with 551 total yards.

Besides Prescott and Lewis, Mississippi State didn't have many players with big individual numbers. That's because just about any Bulldog who touched the ball produced. Ten players caught a pass and nine had at least one rushing attempt.

The Troy-Mississippi State series has traditionally been close, with the Trojans even earning one of the biggest wins in school history against the Bulldogs in 2001. But this one turned ugly by halftime.

#10 Louisiana State

See also: LSU Tigers football and 2013 LSU Tigers football team

Louisiana State at Mississippi State
1 234Total
Tigers 14 14328 59
Bulldogs 9 1430 26

Zach Mettenberger surveyed the field with plenty of time to throw and then delivered a perfect spiral to Odell Beckham Jr., who stopped short of the sideline, spun inside and galloped 33 yards untouched for the touchdown. It was the ninth and final time the two hooked up for a completion, and it proved to be the knockout blow. Mettenberger threw for 340 yards and two touchdowns, Beckham had 179 yards receiving and two touchdowns and No. 10 LSU blew past Mississippi State for a 59–26 victory.

It was a tight game for three quarters, but Mettenberger's touchdown to Beckham gave LSU a 38–26 lead on the first play of the fourth quarter and Mississippi State couldn't respond. LSU closed the game on a 31–0 run, including four touchdowns in the fourth quarter. Mettenberger completed 25 of 29 passes in another impressive performance during the senior's breakout season. Beckham was his favorite target – but Jarvis Landry also caught eight passes for 96 yards. It was a nearly flawless performance, and helped erase some of the sting of last week's 44–41 loss to Georgia. LSU's Jeremy Hill added 157 yards rushing and two touchdowns while Kenny Hilliard added 39 yards rushing and three touchdowns. The Tigers (5–1, 2–1 Southeastern Conference) have won 14 straight over Mississippi State (2–3, 0–2) dating back to 1999. LSU has a 21–1 record under Miles following a loss.

Mississippi State's Dak Prescott threw for 106 yards and rushed for 103 more. Jameon Lewis caught seven passes for 111 yards and a touchdown. The Bulldogs' offense was good, especially early, but LSU's was even better. The Tigers' receiver duo of Landry and Beckham was unstoppable, even when Mississippi State appeared to have good coverage, and Mettenberger found them early and often. The Tigers finished with 563 total yards.

LSU needed all those yards, because the defense was gashed for a second straight week. The Tigers gave up nearly 500 yards last week in a loss to Georgia and Mississippi State had some early success with a two-quarterback system. The 6-foot-2, 230-pound Prescott has been terrific in Russell's place, providing much more of a running threat. On the team's first offensive drive, he rewarded Mullen's confidence with a 28-yard touchdown run to pull the Bulldogs to 7–6. Russell entered the game early in the second quarter and also had immediate success, throwing a 20-yard touchdown to Lewis to pull Mississippi State to 21–16 in the second quarter. The Bulldogs took a 23–21 lead on Russell's 59-yard touchdown pass to De'Runnya Wilson, but LSU responded with a 14-yard touchdown pass from Mettenberger to Beckham to take a 28–23 lead into halftime. Russell's second touchdown pass was the 39th of his career, which set a Mississippi State record. He finished 7 of 11 for 146 yards passing.

The teams combined for 608 total yards in the first half – 334 for LSU and 274 for Mississippi State. LSU's defense tightened in the second half, giving up just three points.

Bowling Green

See also: Bowling Green Falcons football and 2013 Bowling Green Falcons football team

Bowling Green at Mississippi State
1 234Total
Falcons 3 1070 20
Bulldogs 14 700 21

Dak Prescott rushed for 139 yards and 2 touchdowns to lead Mississippi State to a 21–20 win over Bowling Green in a non-conference game Saturday night. After a failed fourth-and-1 by MSU, Bowling Green (5–2) had the ball and 4:21 on the clock at the end of the game, but couldn't get inside field goal range. Mississippi State (3–3) had 422 yards of offense, 245 on the ground as the Bulldogs won their 11th straight nonconference home game.

The game was a back-and-forth affair. Mississippi State opened the game on a 9-play, 75-yard drive that ended in a LaDarius Perkins touchdown. Bowling Green's BooBoo Gates intercepted Prescott on MSU's next offensive series, and the Falcons eventually settled for a 35-yard field goal by Tyler Tate. Prescott responded on the next drive by rushing for a 75-yard touchdown. In the second quarter, Bowling Green answered with a 96-yard drive capped off by a 7-yardAndre Givens touchdown run. Mississippi State countered with a 75-yard drive and a 10-yard Prescott touchdown run with 1:04 left in the second quarter. But quarterback Matt Johnson worked Bowling Green into field goal range, and Tate nailed a 45-yarder to end the first half.

Tate missed a 45-yard field goal on the opening drive of the third quarter, but Bowling Green responded with a 7-play touchdown drive on its next possession, to pull within one point; the eventual final margin. With 4:21 left in the game, Mississippi State went for a fourth-and-1 on the Bowling Green six yard line. Prescott's rush was inches short, and the Bulldogs turned it over on downs. Johnson completed four passes and Green rushed once to get the Falcons to midfield. But then the drive stalled, and Johnson failed to complete a fourth-and-11 to Ryan Burbrink, and Mississippi State ran out the clock.

For MSU, Perkins rushed for 83 yards and one touchdown. Perkins, Joe Morrow and Jameon Lewis each caught four passes. Prescott was also 7-of-11 passing for 75 yards and one interception. Mullen again used both Prescott, a sophomore, and veteran quarterback Tyler Russell throughout the game. Russell finished 12-of-14 for 102 yards.

Johnson was 19-of-33 for 194 yards for Bowling Green. Travis Green rushed for 99 yards and Ryan Burbrink caught four passes for a game-high 66 yards. Bowling Green's Gates was ejected in the second quarter for targeting.


See also: Kentucky Wildcats football and 2013 Kentucky Wildcats football team

Kentucky at Mississippi State
1 234Total
Kentucky 7 393 22
Bulldogs 14 770 28

Mississippi State coach Dan Mullen came to the postgame press conference, sat in his chair, adjusted the microphone and then let out a strange noise that was somewhere between a scream and sigh of relief. The Bulldogs had picked up their first Southeastern Conference victory of the season. But it wasn't easy at all. Mississippi State beat Kentucky 28–22 on Thursday night at Davis Wade Stadium. The Bulldogs built a 21–7 lead in the first half, but couldn't secure the game until Kentucky's last drive fell short at Mississippi State's 29 with 21 seconds left.

Dak Prescott threw for 268 yards and two touchdowns and also caught a 17-yard touchdown pass in another impressive all-around performance. He completed a career-high 23 of 34 passes and also rushed for 33 yards. Jameon Lewis had a 19-yard touchdown run, caught a 17-yard scoring pass and also threw the 17-yard touchdown to Prescott on a trick play. Mississippi State (4–3, 1–2 SEC) beat Kentucky (1–6, 0–4) for a fifth straight season. It's the second time this season Lewis has had rushing, receiving and passing touchdowns in a game. The 5-foot-9, 195-pound senior was a quarterback in high school and Mullen relishes his diverse skill set.

Kentucky's Joe Mansour made a 44-yard field goal with 8:15 remaining to pull the Wildcats to 28–22. Mississippi State chewed up 6 minutes of clock the ensuing next drive, but Kentucky had one final chance. The Wildcats methodically moved downfield until Maxwell Smith's fourth-down pass missed its target and Mississippi State escaped.

Kentucky pulled to 21–19 in the third quarter on Jojo Kemp's 14-yard touchdown run. Then in what proved to be a key moment, the Wildcats recovered an onside kick, only to have it disallowed because of an offsides penalty. Mississippi State took advantage. A 74-yard drive ended on the halfback pass from Lewis to Prescott, who handed the ball off before leaking into the open field for the catch, touchdown and 28–19 lead. Prescott, a 6-foot-2, 230-pound sophomore, completed 11 of 18 passes for 160 yards and two touchdowns in the first half, helping Mississippi State to a 21–10 halftime lead.

Prescott's first touchdown pass – a 60-yard fling to a wide open Malcolm Johnson – came after he danced out of the pocket while avoiding a sack. Kentucky's defense shifted forward because of Prescott's ability to run, and it gave Johnson time to slip behind the secondary undetected. The Bulldogs had 296 total yards in the first half. Mississippi State started the game with the intention of using two quarterbacks, but Tyler Russell suffered a sprained ankle on his first series and never returned.

Kentucky's offense had a few good early moments – especially on a 51-yard screen pass from Smith to Timmons that tied the game at 7 – but the Wildcats became predictable because of their inability to throw downfield. Smith has dealt with pain in his throwing shoulder all season and wasn't close on most of his attempts to complete long passes. Kentucky's Smith completed 18 of 33 passes for 160 yards and one touchdown. Backup Jalen Whitlow led one touchdown drive, but was hampered because of a previous ankle injury. Raymond Sanders had 86 yards rushing.

Mississippi State safety Nickoe Whitley was ejected in the second quarter after earning two personal foul penalties over a span of four plays. The extra 30 yards greatly aided Kentucky on a drive that ended on a 45-yard field goal by Mansour.

#14 South Carolina

See also: South Carolina Gamecocks football and 2013 South Carolina Gamecocks football team

Mississippi State at South Carolina
1 234Total
Bulldogs 7 306 16
Gamecocks 14 3170 34

Connor Shaw passed for four touchdowns, Mike Davis moved past 1,000 yards this season and the 14th-ranked Gamecocks got five turnovers to defeat the Bulldogs 34–16 for their school-record tying 15th straight home victory Saturday. It had been a long time coming for a group that had been one of the Southeastern Conference's best defenses the past few years. The Gamecocks had collected only 11 turnovers its first eight games, but got five of them – four off Mississippi State quarterback Dak Prescott – to pull away in the second half. The Gamecocks (7–2, 5–2 SEC) got 20 points off the turnovers, including 10 in the third quarter as they went from a touchdown up to a 34–10 lead.

Shaw played quarterback just the way he always has – with an emphasis on results. He missed practice Monday and Tuesday with a virus and was not as sharp as usual. Still, the senior tied his career best with the four touchdown passes. He had scoring throws of 14 and 43 yards to Shaq Roland, 6 yards to Damiere Byrd and 4 yards to Jerell Adams to move to 23–5 as South Carolina's starting quarterback. Shaw can tie Todd Ellis' school record for victories when South Carolina plays Florida here in two weeks. Davis had 128 yards and became the Gamecocks' first 1,000-yard rusher since Marcus Lattimore ran for 1,197 yards his freshman season three years ago. South Carolina won its seventh in row over the Bulldogs (4–4, 1–3).

Prescott threw three interceptions – he had just three in seven games coming in – and had a fumble. He did have touchdown runs of 1 and 11 yards, upping his SEC-leading touchdown total to 12.

The Gamecocks got themselves back in the SEC Eastern Division hunt with last week's 27–24, double-overtime victory at then No. 5 Missouri. South Carolina's home streak is the second current longest in the country behind Michigan's 19 in a row.

#11 Texas A&M

See also: Texas A&M Aggies football and 2013 Texas A&M Aggies football team

Mississippi State at Texas A&M
1 234Total
Bulldogs 7 7621 41
Aggies 16 71414 51

Johnny Manziel threw for 446 yards and tied a career-high with five touchdown passes to lead No. 15 Texas A&M to a 51–41 win over Mississippi State. The crowd chanted "one more year" late in the game for Manziel, who is eligible for the draft after this season. Whether he comes back remains to be seen, but he went into the stands to celebrate with the student section when the game was over. Manziel denied that he even has entertained the thought that he might not play here again. Among the crowd of 88,504, third largest ever at A&M, on hand to see Manziel play at Kyle Field for the possibly final time was former President George H.W. Bush and former Texas A&M and current St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Michael Wacha. Texas governor Rick Perry was the co-pilot in the pre-game flyover and also attended the game. Manziel set a school career record for total yards with 9,040 and a single-season record with 31 touchdown passes. He became just the second A&M quarterback to run for 2,000 yards in a career and has 3,313 yards passing this year to become the first Aggie with two 3,000-yard passing seasons.

Mississippi State cut the lead to 10 points early in the fourth quarter, but Manziel threw his fifth touchdown pass to make it 44–27 for A&M (8–2, 4–2 Southeastern Conference). The defense grabbed an interception and Ben Malena's 2-yard touchdown run extended the lead to 51–27. Dak Prescott threw for 149 yards and two scores and ran for 154 yards for Mississippi State (4–5, 1–4). Kennedy and Travis Labhart had two touchdown receptions each. Mike Evans had 116 yards receiving to break the school single-season record with 1,263.

Russell started the game in place of Prescott, who missed practice this week after his mother died of cancer on Sunday. Prescott entered the game on Mississippi State's third drive and got the majority of the snaps after that. Manziel evaded the rush and connected with Kennedy for a 21-yard touchdown to extend Texas A&M's lead to 30–14 in the third quarter. The Bulldogs cut the lead to 10 points late in the third quarter on a touchdown pass by Prescott. But A&M made it 37–20 two plays later on a 15-yard run by Williams. That scored was set up by a 75-yard reception by Evans.

The Bulldogs got within 10 points again after a touchdown throw by Tyler Russell with 2:19 remaining. But the onside kick was recovered by A&M. Bulldogs receiver Jameon Lewis threw a touchdown pass to Joe Morrow on a reverse early in the fourth quarter to get within 37–27. Trey Williams returned the ensuing kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown. But it was negated by an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty after he flipped into the end zone.

Manziel was intercepted three times, twice by Jamerson Love. The turnovers helped keep Mississippi State close, but the Bulldogs couldn't keep up.

#1 Alabama

See also: Alabama Crimson Tide football, 2013 Alabama Crimson Tide football team, and Alabama–Mississippi State football rivalry

Alabama at Mississippi State
1 234Total
Crimson Tide 3 773 20
Bulldogs 0 070 7

Alabama looked lethargic, uninspired, sloppy and downright ordinary against a middling Southeastern Conference team. And the top-ranked Crimson Tide still found a way to win by nearly two touchdowns. T. J. Yeldon rushed for 160 yards and A. J. McCarron threw two touchdown passes as Alabama overcame four turnovers to beat Mississippi State 20–7.

It was the lowest scoring game of the season for Alabama (10–0, 7–0 SEC), which led 10–7 midway through the third quarter before pulling away. Alabama has seemed invincible over the past two months, winning seven straight games by at least three touchdowns. But that aura wasn't anywhere to be found at Davis Wade Stadium, with Nick Saban's bunch looking curiously mortal after last week's emotional victory over LSU.

Mississippi State (4–6, 1–5) kept the game far closer than most anticipated, but couldn't take advantage of Alabama's mistakes. Tyler Russell started for the injured Dak Prescott and completed 15 of 24 passes for 144 yards and an interception before leaving with a shoulder injury when the Bulldogs were trying to rally in the fourth quarter. A.J. McCarron tossed two rare interceptions and Yeldon had a costly fumble that led to Mississippi State's only touchdown, but Alabama survived to set up a much-anticipated Iron Bowl with Auburn.

Mississippi State had two chances to get back into the game in the fourth quarter after McCarron's second interception and a fumble by Kenyan Drake gave the Bulldogs field position in Alabama territory. But without Russell, Mississippi State's offense went nowhere. Freshman Damian Williams didn't connect on any of his five pass attempts – though two of them were good passes that were dropped.

McCarron completed 18 of 32 passes. His first interception in the second quarter was his first in 139 pass attempts. It was the third 100-plus streak without an interception during his career. Alabama parlayed a methodical 14-play, 59-yard opening drive into Cade Foster's 33-yard field goal and a 3–0 lead. But the next four drives were brutal for the Crimson Tide's offense, which managed just two first downs during that span. Mississippi State tried to take advantage with a long drive midway through the second quarter, but it bogged down on the 7 and Evan Sobiesk missed a 24-yard field goal that could have tied the game. A few minutes later, the Tide finally broke through with Yeldon's 50-yard run down the sideline to Mississippi State's 28. McCarron hit Brian Vogler five plays later for an 18-yard touchdown pass with 20 seconds remaining in the second quarter to give Alabama a 10–0 halftime lead.

It looked like that would be all the breathing room Alabama needed, but the mistakes continued in the second half. Yeldon fumbled after a 10-yard run and Mississippi State's Beniquez Brown recovered at Alabama's 48. The Bulldogs then drove downfield and scored thanks to Russell's timely passes and a stroke of luck. Russell fumbled just short of a touchdown, but right tackle Charles Siddoway fell on the ball in the end zone to pull Mississippi State within 10–7. McCarron's 11-yard pass to Norwood pushed the Tide ahead 17–7 with 5:46 left in the third quarter. Alabama's defense held an opponent to seven points or less for the sixth time this season.


See also: Arkansas Razorbacks football and 2013 Arkansas Razorbacks football team

Mississippi State at Arkansas
1 234OTTotal
Bulldogs 0 10077 24
Razorbacks 7 3700 17

Mississippi State finally got the best of Arkansas in an overtime game and in the state of Arkansas. True Freshman and third-string quarterback Damian Williams scored on a 25-yard touchdown run on the first play of overtime, and the Mississippi State defense made it stand, as the Bulldogs defeated Arkansas 24–17 on Saturday at War Memorial Stadium in Little Rock.

Mississippi State (5–6, 2–5 Southeastern Conference) got an interception by Taveze Calhoun on fourth down to seal the victory and keep its bowl hopes alive. Arkansas gained only one yard on its first three plays, and Calhoun stepped in front of the receiver and snared Brandon Allen's pass, returning it across midfield before being tackled. The Bulldogs lost to Arkansas in overtime contests in 1996, 2000 and 2010, all in Starkville, Miss., and had never defeated the Razorbacks in Arkansas. Mississippi State's best result in the Natural State was a 13–13 tie in 1993. Arkansas still leads the all-time series 15–8–1. The Bulldogs can become bowl eligible with a win over rival Ole Miss on Thanksgiving night in Starkville.

Mississippi State had a chance to win the game in regulation, but Devon Bell's 42-yard field goal drifted wide right with 24 seconds remaining. That came after Arkansas (3–8, 0–7) failed to cash in on its own chance to take the lead late in regulation. With the score tied 17–17, Allen passed to Jeremy Sprinkle for 44 yards to the Mississippi State 12. But Alex Collins fumbled on the next play, and Nickoe Whitley recovered for the Bulldogs at the Arkansas 9.

The Razorbacks took the opening kick and went 56 yards for a touchdown. After Korliss Marshall's kick return gave the Razorbacks a short field, they quickly moved into Mississippi State territory. Javontee Herndon scored, also on an end around, and Arkansas led 7–0. Zach Hocker added a career-best 54-yard field goal in the second quarter to make it 10–0. Arkansas led 10–0 in the first half, but was unable to maintain the lead and lost its eighth consecutive game for the first time in school history. The Bulldogs countered in the final minutes of the second quarter. Bell's 24-yard field goal got them on the scoreboard with 5:08 left. Russell then found LaDarius Perkins on a play action down the middle of the field for a 30-yard touchdown to pull the Bulldogs even.

After a first half that ended in a 10–10 tie, the Razorbacks took a 17–10 lead on a 22-yard run by Julian Horton in the third quarter on an end around. The Bulldogs answered immediately, covering 75 yards in 11 plays, as Tyler Russell connected with Jameon Lewis for a 5-yard touchdown on third down to knot the score. Russell completed 18 of 28 passes for 263 yards and two scores before leaving the game late in regulation with an apparent shoulder injury. Josh Robinson had 17 carries for 101 yards. Arkansas rushed for 225 yards as a team, spread out among nine ball carriers, but managed only 114 yards passing.


See also: 2013 Ole Miss Rebels football team and Egg Bowl

Ole Miss Rebels (7–4) at Mississippi State Bulldogs (5–6)
1 2 34OTTotal
Ole Miss 0 7 30010
Mississippi St 0 7 03717

at Davis Wade Stadium, Starkville, Mississippi

With Mississippi State's offense struggling and time slipping away in the Egg Bowl, coach Dan Mullen turned to Dak Prescott and asked him to win the game. Injured shoulder and all, the sophomore quarterback did just that, running for a 3-yard touchdown in overtime to lead the Bulldogs past rival Mississippi 17–10 on a chilly Thursday night at Davis Wade Stadium. Prescott didn't enter the game until the fourth quarter because of a nerve injury to his non-throwing arm that caused him to miss the previous two games. But the sophomore led the Bulldogs (6–6, 3–5 Southeastern Conference) to their tying drive in the fourth quarter and the game winner in overtime. Prescott completed 11 of 20 passes for 115 yards in a performance that will long be remembered in Egg Bowl lore. His game-winning touchdown came on a gutsy call by Mullen, who opted to go for it on fourth-and-1 at the 3 instead of kicking a short field goal. It was an emotional win for the Bulldogs and especially Prescott, whose mother died earlier this month after a yearlong battle with cancer.

Ole Miss had a chance to tie the game in overtime, but the drive ended when quarterback Bo Wallace fumbled and Mississippi State's Jamerson Love recovered the ball in the end zone. The Bulldogs are now bowl eligible for a fourth straight season, the longest streak in school history. Mississippi State has won four of the past five Egg Bowls and five in a row at Davis Wade Stadium.

Mississippi State Freshman Damian Williams, the third-string quarterback, made his first career start because of injuries to Prescott and Tyler Russell. He completed 8 of 18 passes for 82 yards and one interception. Both teams struggled to move the ball in the chilly conditions – especially through the air. The temperature hovered in the low 30s throughout the night, which is downright frigid by Magnolia State standards. Ole Miss (7–5, 3–5) didn't have an offensive touchdown, scoring only on a field goal and blocked punt in the end zone. The Rebels ended the regular season on a two-game losing streak. The Rebels had one good early drive but it ended with nothing after Andrew Ritter's 27-yard field goal attempt bounced off the left upright.

Wallace threw three interceptions before halftime, and the final one was costly. Mississippi State's Justin Cox grabbed it at the Ole Miss 30, and the Bulldogs' subsequent drive ended with Josh Robinson's 1-yard touchdown run for a 7–0 lead with 1:32 remaining in the second quarter. Ole Miss did nothing on its next possession and quickly punted back to Mississippi State, which looked as though it would ease into halftime with the lead. But a mistake on special teams hurt the Bulldogs when Collins Moore burst through the line and blocked Baker Swedenburg's punt after the snap was bobbled. It was recovered by little-used senior Terrell Grant in the end zone to tie the game at 7. Ole Miss grabbed the lead for the first time early in the third quarter after Ritter's 22-yard field goal gave the Rebels a 10–7 advantage. The points were certainly welcome for the Ole Miss offense, but it was the team's fifth straight trip to the red zone without a touchdown, dating back to last weekend's loss to Missouri.

That lack of efficiency came back to haunt the Rebels. Williams played decently for the Bulldogs and avoided any major mistakes, but with the offense struggling early in the fourth quarter, Mullen turned to Prescott. Mullen said earlier in the week that Prescott wouldn't play in the Egg Bowl, but he looked plenty healthy as he led the Bulldogs down the field on his second drive, completing several impressive passes. The drive ended with Sobiesk's 36-yard field goal to tie it at 10. Mississippi State received the ball one final time but Sobiesk missed a 38-yard field goal wide right at the end of regulation that would have won the game.


See also: Rice Owls football, 2013 Rice Owls football team, and 2013 Liberty Bowl

Rice vs Mississippi State
1 234Total
Rice 7 000 7
Bulldogs 7 20143 44

Dak Prescott delivered a performance that would have made his mother proud and make him a dark-horse candidate for the Heisman Trophy in 2014. Prescott threw three touchdown passes and ran for two more scores Tuesday as Mississippi State trounced Rice 44–7 in the most one-sided AutoZone Liberty Bowl victory in the game's 55-year history in Memphis. The sophomore quarterback delivered arguably the finest performance of his career less than two months after his mother, Peggy, died of cancer.

Mississippi State (7–6) wrapped up its fourth straight winning season and prevented Rice (10–4) from winning bowl games in back-to-back years for the first time. All of Mississippi State's losses this season came against teams currently in the Top 25: No. 13 Oklahoma State, No. 2 Auburn, No. 14 LSU, No. 8 South Carolina, No. 20 Texas A&M and No. 3 Alabama. The Bulldogs became bowl eligible by closing the regular season with consecutive overtime victories over Arkansas and Ole Miss. This marks the first time since 1974 that Mississippi State has closed a season with three straight wins.

Nobody faced more adversity than Prescott, who set a Liberty Bowl record by accounting for five touchdowns. Prescott was 17 of 28 for 283 yards passing and also ran for 78 yards on 14 carries. Prescott's performance delighted a partisan crowd of 57,846 and capped a triumphant late-season performance amid personal tragedy for the sophomore quarterback. Prescott came off the bench in the fourth quarter to lead Mississippi State to a 17–10 overtime victory over Ole Miss last month that earned the Bulldogs a bowl bid. Although Prescott and senior Tyler Russell had shared quarterback duties throughout the regular season, Prescott had the job to himself in the Liberty Bowl while Russell recovered from surgery to repair a torn labrum in his throwing shoulder. Prescott responded better than anyone could have reasonably imagined.

Prescott wasn't Mississippi State's only star on a night when the Bulldogs outgained Rice 533–145 and scored the game's final 44 points. Mississippi State's Jameon Lewis caught nine passes for 220 yards to break the Liberty Bowl receiving record held by Houston's Vincent Marshall, who had 201 yards in a 44–36 loss to South Carolina in 2006. Lewis also set the school single-game record.

Not to forget, the Bulldogs also played dominant defense. Rice had won the Conference USA title – its first outright league championship of any kind since 1957 – by relying on a rushing attack that was ranked 16th among all Football Bowl Subdivision teams. Rice gained only 61 yards rushing – 179 below its season average – on 32 carries against Mississippi State. Charles Ross, who entered the day having rushed for 1,252 yards and 14 touchdowns this season, was held to 28 yards on 10 carries.

Rice took an early lead on Ross' 1-yard touchdown run, but Mississippi State took control by reaching the end zone on six of its next seven possessions. Prescott threw first-half touchdown passes to LaDarius Perkins, Malcolm Johnson and Artimus Samuel before running for two scores in the third quarter.


See also: 2013 NCAA Division I FBS football rankings

Ranking movements
Legend: ██ Increase in ranking. ██ Decrease in ranking.
NR = Not ranked. RV = Received votes. т = Tied with team above or below. ( ) = First place votes.
Poll Pre 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 Final 
Harris Not released NR NR NR NR NR NR NR NR NR Not released 
BCS Not released NR NR NR NR NR NR NR NR Not released


Passing Stats

Name CMP ATT YDS % AVG TD INT Dak Prescott 156 267 1940 58.4 7.27 10 7 Tyler Russell 71 109 875 65.1 8.03 5 3 Damian Williams 23 47 279 48.9 5.94 0 2 Jameon Lewis 3 3 84 100.0 28.0 3 0

Rushing Stats

Name CAR YDS AVG LNG TD Dak Prescott 134 829 6.2 75 13 LaDarius Perkins 137 542 4.0 35 2 Josh Robinson 78 459 5.9 51 3 Ashton Shumpert 46 190 4.1 14 3 Jameon Lewis 13 117 9.0 44 3 Damian Williams 37 112 3.0 25 1 Nick Griffin 24 96 4.0 10 1 Derrick Milton 13 69 5.3 14 2

Receiving Stats

Name REC YDS AVG LNG TD Jameon Lewis 64 923 14.4 65 5 Malcolm Johnson 30 391 13.0 60 2 Robert Johnson 34 389 11.4 61 0 De'Runnya Wilson 26 351 13.5 59 3 LaDarius Perkins 27 248 9.2 32 3 Joe Morrow 18 211 11.7 31 1 Josh Robinson 12 115 12.8 23 0 Fred Ross 9 115 12.8 23 0 Brandon Holloway 7 77 11.0 34 0 Fred Brown 5 74 14.8 19 0 Dak Prescott 2 53 26.5 36 2

Kicking Stats

Name XPM XPA FGM FGA % LNG PTS Devon Bell 25 26 6 14 42.9 40 43 Evan Sobiesk 15 16 3 6 50.0 38 24

Punting Stats

Name ATT YDS AVG LNG I-20 Blake Swedenberg 25 1063 42.4 53 6 Devon Bell 24 990 41.2 62 14

Kick Returning Stats

Name ATT YDS AVG TD LNG Jameon Lewis 19 446 23.5 0 66 Robert Johnson 4 41 10.2 0 19 Brandon Holloway 3 113 37.7 0 95 Chris Harrison 1 7 7.0 0 7

Punt Return Stats

Name ATT YDS AVG TD LNG Jameon Lewis 22 51 2.3 0 16 Brandon Holloway 2 36 18.0 0 23

Defensive Stats

Name SOLO AST TKL TFL SACKS INT FUM Brandon McKinney 42 29 71 7 3.5 0 2 Deontae Skinner 33 31 64 4.5 1 1 0 Kendrick Market 43 19 62 1.5 0 0 0 Nikoe Whitley 38 17 55 1 0 5 1 Matthew Wells 28 22 50 6 1 0 2 Taveze Calhoun 33 12 45 1.5 0 3 1 Preston Smith 29 15 44 6.5 2.5 0 0 Beniquez Brown 16 23 39 4.5 0 0 2 Richie Brown 16 22 38 3 2 1 0 Zach Jackson 16 17 33 2.5 0 0 0 Chris Jones 17 15 32 7 3 0 0 Denico Autry 14 17 31 6.5 2 0 0 Justin Cox 23 8 31 0.5 0 1 0 Jamerson Love 22 5 27 1 0 3 1 Kaleb Eulls 9 17 26 1.5 0 0 0 P.J. Jones 9 16 25 3 1 0 0 Will Redmond 14 9 23 2.5 0 0 0 Cedric Jiles 14 6 20 0 0 0 0 Deontay Evans 11 8 19 0 0 0 0 A.J. Jefferson 12 7 19 4 2 0 0


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