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Chad Kelly excited about Egg Bowl matchup, not worried about cowbells

Chad Kelly excited about Egg Bowl matchup, not worried about cowbells
Chad Kelly leads the SEC in passing yards. (Photo credit: Amanda Swain, The Rebel Walk)

Chad Kelly leads the SEC in passing yards. (Photo credit: Amanda Swain, The Rebel Walk)

This Saturday when Ole Miss (8-3, 5-2 SEC) takes on Mississippi State in the annual Egg Bowl, Rebels’ quarterback Chad Kelly will be visiting Davis Wade Stadium at Scott Field for the first time in his career.

Though he has heard a lot about the rivalry, he has yet to experience it for himself. 

Kelly is familiar with Bulldogs’ quarterback Dak Prescott; both quarterbacks were together during the Manning Passing Academy camp over the summer. The Rebels’ quarterback is currently the top leader in passing yards (3,504) in the Southeastern Conference, while Prescott is right behind him at 3,159.

Kelly has seen what the Bulldogs (8-3, 4-3) are capable of doing on both sides of the football and is pumped for the opportunity to be part of such a game. But the Buffalo, New York native is not particularly familiar with some of the traditions of the Egg Bowl.

Chad Kelly unfamiliar with cowbells

Take the cowbells, for example; Kelly said he has yet to hear or see one in his lifetime:

I never really been around a cowbell before or seen a cowbell until on TV. I’m just a kid from Buffalo, never heard a cowbell in Buffalo, so I’m anxious to get out there and feel the crowd, see the crowd. It’s going to be fun. It’s a rivalry game, that’s what it’s supposed to be. It’s supposed to be intense. I can’t wait.

Since Kelly has yet to hear a cowbell, how will he prepare for the raucous crowd that awaits him in Starkville? Senior defensive back Chief Brown offered the answer. 

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Chief Brown (Photo credit: Amanda Swain, The Rebel Walk)

Chief Brown on Rebels’ preparation for cowbells

“We will turn the speakers up as loud as possible, with the cowbells ringing at practice,” said Brown, who also mentioned there’s no different preparation for Mississippi State this season. “Those cowbells can get to you. It’s a great atmosphere, especially with it being one of the biggest games of the year.

“The cowbells have a loud ringing sound to them, so it kind of gets to you. It throws you off focus, especially when the offense is on the field. It’s going to be pretty loud to communicate out there and it can cause some complications,” he added. 

Mike Hilton not concerned about cowbells 

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Mike Hilton (Photo credit: Amanda Swain, The Rebel Walk)

Senior huskie/cornerback Mike Hilton is used to the ringing of the cowbells and heard them two years ago in Ole Miss’ 17-10 overtime loss to the Bulldogs. Hilton isn’t scared of the loudness of the cowbells and feels the team will simply have to block the noise out during the game.

Hilton, who has 55 total tackles, 10 pass break-ups, two interceptions, and 1.5 sacks thus far this season, laughed when he heard Kelly’s comment about the cowbells, not surprised that the quarterback and some of their fellow teammates have not heard them.

Before Hilton, a native of Georgia, committed to the Rebels back in 2012, he, too, was unaware aware of the cowbell tradition as well as the rivalry between both Mississippi programs. “When I got here, I found out how much it really meant to both teams and both communities, and I think it’s one of the top rivalries in the country,” Hilton said.

Feature image credit: Amanda Swain, The Rebel Walk

About The Author

Courtney Smith

Courtney is from Memphis and received his Bachelor's Degree in Fine Arts from the University of Memphis in May of 2014. He began his journalism career covering the Memphis Tigers Men's basketball team, which landed him an intern position on 730 Yahoo Sports Radio and a position with Rivals.com. A freelance writer for the Associated Press, Courtney is also a member of The Rebel Walk team and reports regularly on Ole Miss football and basketball. Courtney, the father of a six-year old girl named Soniyah, prefers to cover NCAA basketball and football, but is happy to report on any other sport that comes his way.

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