The 2022 Mississippi college football season, a sneak preview:
Sept. 3: Ole Miss clobbers Troy 41-14, and souvenir program sales set a record because even the most ardent Rebel fans need a roster to tell who all the transfers are. Mississippi State defeats Memphis 30-29 when a long Memphis punt return for the apparent winning touchdown is called back because of an inadvertent whistle. Southern Miss upsets Liberty 24-21 in overtime, spoiling Liberty coach Hugh Freeze’s (USM, Class of 1992) return to Hattiesburg. On Sunday, Jackson State whips Florida A&M 28-17 in the Orange Blossom Classic in Miami Gardens.
Sept. 10: The Miami Hurricanes deal Southern Miss its first loss, 31-14 in a morning kickoff at Miami. Several hours later, Mississippi State rallies after midnight to defeat Arizona 29-28 on a last-second touchdown pass. In between, Ole Miss whacks Central Arkansas 38-13. Jackson State slams Tennessee State 37-20 in what apparently will be the last Southern Heritage Classic at Memphis, a long-standing rivalry game that JSU coach Deion Sanders famously has called “a hustle.”
Sept. 17: Ole Miss knocks off Georgia Tech 31-20 in the Rebels’ first visit to Grant Field since 1946, one year before John Howard Vaught became the Ole Miss coach. Mississippi State drops a 27-26 decision to LSU at Tiger Stadium, where Tigers coach Brian Kelly line dances, somewhat awkwardly, with LSU recruits at midfield afterward. Southern Miss rocks Northwestern (La.) State 34-10. Jackson State easily defeats Grambling 31-7.
Sept. 24: Will Rogers, who never met a pass he didn’t like, throws for five touchdowns in State’s 42-10 trouncing of Bowling Green. Ole Miss hangs on for a 27-20 victory over stubborn Tulsa. Southern Miss drops to 2-2 with a 20-17 loss at Tulane. Jackson State sacks Mississippi Valley State 33-7 before a second consecutive crowd of 45,000 at Mississippi Veterans Memorial Stadium.
Oct. 1: In a battle of SEC unbeaten teams, Ole Miss edges Kentucky 30-27. Texas A$M (that’s no typo) defeats Mississippi State 20-17, dropping the Bulldogs to 3-2.
Oct. 8: Mississippi State stuns Arkansas 42-41 in overtime. Ole Miss wallops Vanderbilt 38-14. Southern Miss falls at Troy in its first Sun Belt Conference game, 24-20. Alabama State, under first-year coach Eddie Robinson Jr. scares unbeaten Jackson State before falling 28-24 at Montgomery.
Oct. 15: Southern Miss wins its first-ever Sun Belt Conference game, downing Arkansas State 24-20. Ole Miss defeats Auburn 34-17. Auburn’s Board of Trustees polls its members afterward for the firing of Bryan Harsin. Mississippi State upsets Kentucky 31-27. Bethune-Cookman shocks visiting Jackson State 27-24, spoiling JSU’s perfect season.
Oct. 22: Ole Miss rallies past LSU 37-34 to remain unbeaten at 7-0. Mississippi State gets its annual 40 lashes at Alabama, 42-21. Southern Miss returns to its Super Back offense to defeat Texas State 27-20 on the road. Jackson State bounces back with a 52-7 trouncing of the Campbell Camels.
Oct. 29: On Thursday night (the 27th), Louisiana nips Southern Miss 27-24. Texas A$M (again, not a typo) knocks Ole Miss from the ranks of unbeaten 34-31 at College Station. Jackson State waltzes past Southern U. 38-7 at Veterans Memorial Stadium, but the halftime show is much closer with the Sonic Boom staying on the field an extra five minutes to a standing ovation.
Nov. 5: State wins 31-21 over Auburn. Auburn Board of Trustees can’t get a quorum for another coaching change. Ty Keys returns from a leg injury to lift Southern Miss to a 27-20 victory over Georgia State, moving the Golden Eagles to 5-4 and one victory from bowl eligibility. Jackson State travels to Houston for a 38-20 victory over Texas Southern.
Nov. 12: After a week of Nick Saban singing praises of Lane Kiffin, Alabama controls the ball for nearly three quarters of playing time in a 48-17 victory over Ole Miss at Oxford. Georgia thrashes Mississippi State 38-14 at Starkville. Coastal Carolina drops Southern Miss 34-27. Jackson State whacks Alabama A&M 44-10.
Nov. 19: Fred McNair and Alcorn State scare the socks off Jackson State before the Tigers prevail 29-28 in the Soul Bowl. JSU finishes the regular season with a 10-1 record. Arkansas runs to a 30-24 victory over Ole Miss, making the Hogs 12-3 all-time against Ole Miss at Fayetteville. Mississippi State routs East Tennessee State 41-10. Southern Miss – finally – defeats South Alabama 27-24 to become bowl eligible.
Thanksgiving Day: It’s 7-4 Mississippi State going against 8-3 Ole Miss in the Egg Bowl at Oxford. The Rebels successfully protect their home turf in a 41-38 shootout.
Nov. 26: Southern Miss slams Louisiana-Monroe 34-17 on the road to finish 7-5 and await a bowl bid.
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