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Report Card: Rebels win the 2014 Egg Bowl!

Report Card: Rebels win the 2014 Egg Bowl!

Ole Miss defeated Mississippi State in the 2014 Egg Bowl in a convincing, 31-17 fashion Saturday. The Rebel Walk graded the Ole Miss team and coaching staff, and the results will probably not surprise you. 

Hotty Toddy and congratulations on bringing the Egg Bowl Trophy back home to Oxford! 

Offense: A+

The Rebels were able to move the ball at will against the State defense. In the second quarter, Bo Wallace hit Vince Sanders for a 30-yard completion; however, Sanders was hurt on the play and would not return. Throughout the rest of the game, other receivers and running backs stepped up to help take some of the pressure off Bo.

The offense put up 31 points in the game, scoring in three of the four quarters. The Rebels passed for 327 yards and rushed for 205, and had as balanced of an attack as is possible—31 pass attempts and 31 rush attempts.

Defense: A+

The Rebel Land Shark defense harassed State quarterback Prescott and the Bulldogs all day with yet another tremendous effort. Defenders flew to the ball all day long, notching nine tackles for loss on the day.

Ole Miss held the Bulldogs to 163 rushing yards and sacked Prescott 3 times. He passed for 282 on 37 attempts, yet the Bulldogs were only able to muster 17 points in the game.

Special Teams: A +

The coverage teams did a magnificent job of covering kicks and punts today. Ole Miss only gave up 21 yards in return yardage for the day; whereas, the Rebels gained 107 total return yards—87 on kickoff returns and 20 on punt returns.

Nathan Noble had 6 kickoffs with 5 touchbacks. Gary Wunderlich hit his only field goal attempt, and Will Gleeson and Wunderlich averaged 39.8 yards per punt with 0 return yards by Mississippi State.

Play Calling:  A+

The offense was aggressive from the opening possession. We went for it on fourth down on the first drive of the game from our own 47-yard line, and big Jeremy Liggins picked up the first down for the Rebels.

The coaching staff hit the all the right buttons at all the right times.  The running game was the best it has been all season. Jaylen Walton had a career-high 148 yards on 14 carries.

Of his aggressive play-calling, Coach Freeze said after the game:

“I was willing to throw everything we had at them.” — Coach Freeze

The Ole Miss defense was well-coached prior to and during the game.They kept the bulldogs in check all afternoon, and many times Prescott looked confused as he was running his read options.  The aggressive blitz packages caused confusion for the linemen, as well as for Prescott.

Crowd: A+

Attendance for the Egg Bowl today was 62,058, the largest crowd to ever watch a game against Mississippi State game in Oxford, as well as the fifth-largest crowd in Vaught-Hemingway history. The crowd was loud and on its feet for the entire game. The fans in the Vaught played a huge role in the outcome of the game, as State never looked comfortable in the atmosphere.

Senior Day: A+

There is little else that can be said about the group of 21 Rebels who took the field for the final time today. (Read our Rebel Walk article here honoring the seniors.) These players helped turn around an entire program. They finished the 2011 season 2-10 and now end their final regular season 9-3, with an opportunity to win a bowl game and finish 10-3.

The Grove: A++

Was there ever any doubt?

About The Author

Dan Anderson

Dan Anderson is a photographer and writer for The Rebel Walk. In addition to his work covering Ole Miss football and baseball for The Rebel Walk, Dan has written for a number of newspapers and has experience as a public address announcer, handling both play-by-play and color commentary. Dan has been involved with athletics as a player, coach or parent for 40 years, and brings this unique perspective to his coverage, whether through his lens or with his pen.

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