Party like it’s 1999 – Mississippi State Wins a Thriller Over the Kentucky Wildcats


Oct 11, 2014; Starkville, MS, USA; Mississippi State Bulldogs fan celebrates after the final seconds of the game between the Mississippi State Bulldogs and the Auburn Tigers at Davis Wade Stadium. Mississippi State Bulldogs defeated the Auburn Tigers 38-23. Mandatory Credit: Spruce Derden-USA TODAY Sports

Mississippi State has played some exciting games against Kentucky since the series became an every year event in 1992, when the SEC created eastern and western divisions in football and made the Bulldogs and Wildcats permanent cross-divisional opponents.

Perhaps none equals the excitement of the 1999 game, a Thursday night ESPN national broadcast back when playing on Thursday night was a big thing.  Mississippi State was looking to go 8-0 for the first time ever.  The Wildcats, coached by Hal Mumme and led by quarterback Tim Couch proved to be a tough out.

Despite being favored in the game, the Bulldogs spent the majority of the game on the short end of the scoreboard.  The Wildcats had come to play and wanted to make a statement in on a nationally televised platform.

It was redemption time for Westerfield, who had missed a potential game winner just moments earlier. But the Mississippi State defense held and got the ball back for the offense with just  1:30 to play and one timeout remaining.  Quarterback Matt Wyatt, already a master in last minute comebacks, directed the Bulldog offense down the field into field goal range to set up Westerfield with the game winner.  Just as he had done earlier in a thrilling last minute drive against Auburn, Wyatt was steady and effective in the clutch.  Watch and enjoy the final drive (I apologize for the video quality.)

In the end, the Bulldogs prevailed 23-22 as Scott Westerfield nailed a 45 yard field goal with five seconds to play to secure the victory and keep the Bulldogs unbeaten heading into a showdown with Alabama the following week.

Next: Why does Mississippi State Struggle in the 1st Quarter?