Nov 29, 2014; Oxford, MS, USA; Mississippi State Bulldogs quarterback Dak Prescott (15) dives into the end zone for a touchdown against the Mississippi Rebels at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium. The Rebels won 31-17. Mandatory Credit: Spruce Derden-USA TODAY Sports
Now that the regular season for college football is in the books, many people are trying to evaluate how their favorite team performed. In the state of Mississippi, both Mississippi State fans and Ole Miss fans are looking back on their seasons fondly. Both teams performed above what the experts predicted of either school, so there is a lot to be happy about.
But as rivalries often do, the fans of the two teams in Mississippi are now debating about which team had the better year. So what is the basis of each school’s argument?
For Mississippi State, the argument stacks up something like this.
- Predicted to finish 5th in SEC West, actually finished 2nd
- Won 10 games total, 6 in SEC play
- Was ranked number 1 for 5 weeks straight
- Had a chance at making a playoff until the final week of the regular season
- Has two wins over teams that finished in the next to last College Football Playoff Top 25 (#19 Auburn, #24 LSU)
- Only lost two games, #12 Ole Miss and # 1 Alabama
- Finished the season ranked #10 in the next to last College Football Playoff Top 25
For Ole Miss, the argument stacks up along these lines.
- Predicted to finish 4th in the SEC West, actually finished third
- Won 9 games, 5 in SEC Play
- Has three wins over teams that finished in the next to last College Football Playoff Top 25 (#1 Alabama, #10 Mississippi State, #22 Boise State)
- Only lost three games, one of which finished the season ranked, #24 LSU
- Finished the season ranked #12 in the next to last College Football Playoff Top 25
Now those are the arguments that each fan base will present. Here is where Mississippi State will try to tear down Ole Miss and their arguments.
- Mississippi State finished with more SEC wins and higher in the standings
- Mississippi State beat all the teams Ole Miss lost to
- Mississippi State started unranked and finished higher in the rankings
And here is what Ole Miss fans will say to tear the Mississippi State arguments.
- Ole Miss beat the top two teams in the SEC West
- Ole Miss had better wins that Mississippi State
- Ole Miss won the Egg Bowl
And that is going to be our poll question. Who had the better season, Mississippi State or Ole Miss? If I just give you those two options, 99% of Mississippi State fans will vote for Mississippi State, and 99% of Ole Miss fans will vote for Ole Miss. And since this is a Mississippi State website, Mississippi State would be the landslide winner of the poll.
But let me throw out one more option. If you look at what both teams accomplished, there is a reasonable argument that the difference in the two teams’ seasons are so slim that they were virtually equally successful. If you look at the College Football Playoff Poll, Mississippi State is 10 and Ole Miss is 12. If #11 Georgia Tech loses and there are no other upsets on Championship game Saturday, it’s reasonable to assume that the two will be ranked right next to each other in the rankings.
So vote in the poll and let your voice be heard. I’d love to hear your reasons why you voted the way you did in the comments section, especially if you are a fan of one team and voted for the other.