Nick Gibson only got three carries but made the most of them, averaging 19 yards per attempt and scoring on a 27-yard run.
Marcus Murphy, Willie Gay Jr. and Lee Autry combined for 16 tackles, two tackles for loss, one interception, one fumble recovery and two pass deflections.
The Bulldogs’ kickoffs and kickoff coverage were the best they have been all season.
MSU’s defense had nine tackles for loss, four sacks and forced three turnovers.
The Bulldogs allowed Ole Miss to complete a 57-yard pass on 4th-and-24 from its own 14 with under a minute left.
Tucker Day dropped a punt snap and took off running instead of still punting it away which gift-wrapped a game-tying touchdown for the Rebels.
Keys to Victory
(Reviewing the scouting report from our GameDay edition)
Find end zone early
State didn’t have a first down on its first two drives but was able to build a 14-0 lead on its next two possessions. Gibson scored the first touchdown and Garrett Shrader added the second on a 1-yard run.
Stop the running Rebels
Ole Miss entered with the SEC’s top ground game and had rushed for over 400 yards in each of its last outings. The Bulldogs held the Rebels to 139 rushing yards – their second-lowest output of the year – and limited quarterback John Rhys Plumlee to only 34 yards on 18 attempts.
Don’t turn it over
Mississippi State finished plus-two in turnover margin. The Bulldogs fumbled once but may as well have had another turnover added to their total after the botched punt snap play that went awry.
Kylin Hill did not have a touchdown but his presence alone allowed Shrader to score with ease on a pair of goal line plays. Hill had a workmanlike 132 yards on 27 carries marking his eighth 100-yard rushing game this year, which ties Anthony Dixon and Nick Fitzgerald for the most in a single season in school history. He now needs just 44 yards to break Dixon’s single-season rushing record.
MSU’s season has been marred by injuries, suspensions and a revolving door at quarterback but the Bulldogs are going bowling for the 10th-consecutive season.