Revisiting the 2012 Egg Bowl and Why There Won’t Be a Repeat Performance


It’s Egg Bowl week in the state of Mississippi so I don’t have to tell you what that means as there is a lot on the line this week for both Ole Miss (8-3) and Mississippi State (10-1).

For Ole Miss, they can get their ninth win of the 2014 season and end Mississippi State’s dream of a college football playoff appearance.

For Mississippi State, they can at least clinch a share of the SEC West Title and still be in position for the playoff.

Home field has always been a big factor in this rivalry, rarely with the visiting team winning this ball game.  The Bulldogs defeated the Rebels in 2010 and 1998; while the Rebels only win in Starkville lately has been 2003 and 1997.  So to say home field matters in this ball game is an understatement.

Most all Ole Miss Fans remember their only win in the last six tries, a 41-24 victory back in 2012.

You remember that game right?  Bo Wallace “fed” Donte Moncrief for 173-passing yards and 3-scores.  Wallace finished the game with five-touchdown passes and a career day.

Many Ole Miss fans are pointing to a repeat performance of 2012 because this game is in their back yard this year and due to Mississippi State’s secondary at times giving up big plays – but let me explain why you will not see a repeat of the 2012 game.

Let’s break down that 2012 game – a game the Bulldogs gave away; yes you read that correctly, gave away.

The Bulldogs took a 14-7 lead into the second quarter of that ball game and honestly had that game in hand and under control.  The second quarter was the difference maker of that ball game and State had every opportunity to bury Ole Miss and just did not take advantage of their opportunities.  Let’s take a look.

Bryson Rose hit a 43-yard field goal at the 13:36 mark of the quarter to cut State’s lead to 14-10 then the Bulldogs drove to midfield and stalled, having to punt.

The game went back and forth then the Bulldogs drove down to the Ole Miss 18-yard line where the Bulldogs decided to go for it on 4th and 2.  Dak Prescott was subbed into the game as a change of pace player this night and missed a pass intended to Chad Bumphis so the Bulldogs turned the ball over on downs.

Wallace then immediately hit Moncrief on a 77-yard play as Ole Miss took a 17-14 lead.

The Bulldogs drove back down the field, but stalled at the Ole Miss 33-yard line and had to settle for a field goal, knotting the game at 17-17.

Denico Autry forced a Bo Wallace fumble two plays later that was recovered by Kaleb Eulls at the Ole Miss 33-yard line, but Tyler Russell threw it right back to Ole Miss two plays later.

Four opportunities the Bulldogs had across the 50-yard line in the second quarter, two that were deep in Ole Miss territory and State came away with 3-points.  Had the Bulldogs just scored two touchdowns in that series of drives this games at least a 28-17 ball game at the half and Ole Miss never pulls away.

For simplicity sake, check out the second quarter drive chart of the 2012 Egg Bowl.

But – you know what they say about ifs and buts.  State just didn’t capitalize at critical times, letting Ole Miss hang around, then the Rebels ultimately blew their doors off.

This year’s Bulldog team though has shown they can score points and do it on anybody.  When given opportunities, this unit typically capitalizes, unlike the 2012 unit.

Another big piece to Ole Miss success in 2012, that’s always overlooked is that the Rebels rushed the ball for 233-yards that night.  Their balance on offense in that ball game resembles the balance State has had in all of 2014. That balance on the offensive side of the ball kept the Bulldog defense guessing all night back in 2012.

But this year there is no Jeff Scott or Barry Brunetti.  Ole Miss’s offensive line is beat up and their running game is average at best.

So when you put together the balance of the Mississippi State offense and their ability to score points, plus Ole Miss not having that big play receiver or running game, there is just about no way 2012 repeats itself – unless it’s divine intervention.

Ole Miss better thank their lucky stars the 2012 Bulldog football team couldn’t get out of their own way in the second quarter of the Egg Bowl.  Had the Bulldogs gotten just a little production, Dan Mullen and Mississippi State would be going for their sixth straight in this series this Saturday.

Again – as for a repeat of 2012, it’s not happening.  Both of these teams are vastly different than that night and if you give Number-15 in maroon chances, odds are he’s gonna cash it in, unlike in 2012.