Live Blog: Louisville vs. Mississippi State

samdraut

Louisville football faces Mississippi State in the Music City Bowl in Nashville Dec. 30. The Cardinals finished the regular season 7-5 and second in the ACC Atlantic Division, returning to postseason play after going 2-10 in 2018. 

Follow along for live updates and analysis.

Weather at kickoff is 52 degrees with no rain in the forecast and 12 mph winds. The teams are set for a 4:05 p.m. EST kick. 

Both Louisville and Mississippi State will be without offensive starters in today's game. Louisville's starting left tackle Mekhi Becton is sitting out the bowl game to prepare for the 2020 NFL Draft. For the Bulldogs, quarterback Garrett Shrader is inactive due to an eye injury that stemmed from an altercation with a teammate. Tommy Stevens starts in his place.

Louisville wins the coin toss and defers to the second half and force a three-and-out on the first Miss State possession. 

The Cardinals were pinned inside the 10-yard line, but move just south of the 50 in four plays. 

Chunk plays aided the first drive for Louisville, but a fumble from wide receiver Dez Fitzpatrick pushes them off the field. Mississippi State takes over at their one-yard line, 8:58 to play in the first quarter. 

The Cardinals made the Bulldogs cover sideline to sideline in the opening drive as the Mississippi State adjusts to Louisville's speed. 

On third-and-8, Louisville rushes five as Stevens drops back in his own end zone, but the senior evades for a 24-yard run. Stevens uses his legs on the following play to pick up another 15. 

A flea-flicker puts Mississippi State inside the red zone and a face mask penalty advances them inside the 10-yard line. Stevens finishes the drive on a three-yard score. Bulldogs lead 7-0 with 4:48 in the first. 

Mississippi State's scoring drive: eight plays, 99 yards. Stevens rushed four times for 45 yards and threw a pass for 27. Louisville's offense gears up to return to field after recording four plays of 10+ yards in their opening drive. 

Three-and-out for Louisville started with a three-yard loss and capped by an incompletion on third-and-6. Mississippi State takes over at their 24-yard line, 3:10 to play in the first.

A combined sack from linebackers CJ Avery and Boosie Whitlow forces Mississippi State into a third-and-long and the Cardinals rally to the quarterback draw. The take over on their 23-yard line. 

Quarterback Micale Cunningham finds wide receiver Tutu Atwell for 19 yards followed by a seven-yard run by running back Hassan Hall brings Louisville to the 49-yard line. End of the quarter, Miss State holds a 7-0 lead. 

Louisville forced a pair of three-and-outs in the opening quarter, but a fumble by the offense and defense allowing a 99-yard scoring drive is the difference in the first quarter. 

Mississippi State's Willie Gay Jr. makes a big hit on the Hall on third down to prevent the first down. Gay let's the Louisville sideline hear about it and Louisville is forced to punt again. 

The Bulldogs are having a bit of trouble with ball security as they put the ball on the turf at the start of the drive and a bad snap causes a hurried throw from Stevens. 

Louisville put Mississippi State into a third-and-10, but a quarterback keeper picks up 12. The following play, linebacker Dorian Etheridge was disqualified for kicking a Mississippi State player. Etheridge made the tackle and had the Mississippi State player on top of one of his legs. 

Miss State's backup running back Nick Gibson puts in the Bulldogs inside the 10. Two plays later, Gibson plunges in for a touchdown from the three-yard line. Mississippi State leads 14-0. 

Second scoring drive for Mississippi State goes 80 yards on 10 plays. Bulldogs rack up 45 yards on the ground. 

Cunningham uses his legs to pick up nine and 11 yards as the Cardinals move down the field. Cunningham throws to Atwell on a screen pass, who then throws a 33-yard touchdown pass to tight end Marshon Ford. 

Louisville cuts the Bulldogs lead to 14-7 with 7:58 to play in the half. 

Mississippi State fumbles on the kickoff, Cardinals take over. 

Cunningham finds Hall open on third-and-11, but the ball goes through his hands as Louisville faces a fourth down. Timeout Cardinals. With 5:22 to play in the second quarter, Mississippi State holds a 14-7 lead. Louisville's ball on the Miss State 34-yard line. 

Louisville runs four verticals out of three-by-one, but the throw to Fitzpatrick is just out of reach. Bulldogs take over on their 34 with just over five to play. 

Louisville's defense holds strong as they force a no gain on second down followed by a seven-yard loss on third. The Cardinals take over on their 37. 

Cunningham finds Atwell on the crossing route on play action, tripped up in the back field the following play. Clock is winding down as third down comes. 

Cardinals call time with 56 seconds remaining in the half, third-and-10 coming. 

Cunningham escapes the pocket and dots a throw Atwell on the run for the first. 

Cunningham scrambles and kills the clock. An offsides on the spike gives Louisville the first down. 

Louisville takes a shot at the end zone, but it's broken up. Cardinals settle for a field goal. Mississippi State enters halftime with a 14-10 lead. 

Halftime: Mississippi State leads Louisville 14-10.

The Cardinals have 260 yards of offense compared to Mississippi State's 157 yards. 

Louisville starts the second half on the 20-yard-line. 

Cunningham faces an all-out blitz on third-and-9, he finds Atwell for a 27-yard gain for a first down. 

Hawkins picks up a first down on an option-pitch from Cunningham. 

Cunningham is tackled behind the line of scrimmage, the Bulldogs have nine tackles for a loss thus far.

Cunningham picks up 22 yards on a third-and-10, the quarterback got several good blocks on the designed run. 

Cunningham is sacked on a third-and-6. 

Louisville faces a fourth-and-7 from the 16-yard-line. 

9:36 third quarter, Chalifoux misses a 34-yard field goal as Louisville can't come away with points. 

Boosie Whitlow has a sack for an eight-yard loss. 

7:22 third quarter, Louisville's defense forces a three-and-out. Rodjay Burns catches a punt on the Cardinal 45-yard-line. 

6:34 third quarter, Cunningham gains 22 yards on a third-and-10, a big pick up for a drive that wasn't moving. 

Louisville picks up another first down on third-and-10, Atwell hauls in a 13-yard reception in the middle of the field. 

5:01 third quarter, Devante Peete catches a 24-yard touchdown, he was open along the sideline. Louisville leads Mississippi State 17-14. 

4:56 third quarter, Mississippi State takes over on the 20-yard-line. 

Chandler Jones sacks Stevens on second down, a loss of 12 yards. 

2:51 third quarter, Khane Pass scoops up a fumble by Stevens and takes the ball 31 yards for a touchdown. Louisville leads 24-14. Gary McCrae forced the fumble. The Cardinals have scored 24 unanswered points. 

Amonte Caban sacks Stevens on first down. The defensive line is playing as well as it has all year. 

1:30 third quarter, Louisville forces another three-and-out. Burns catches a punt on the 35-yard-line. The Cardinals have all the momentum right now. 

Cunningham completes a 24-yard throw to Atwell.

End of the third quarter: Louisville leads Mississippi State 24-14. 

The Cardinals have 404 yards of offense compared to Mississippi State's 169 yards. The Bulldogs have just 12 yards of offense in the third quarter. 

Cunningham completes a 29-yard throw to Justin Marshall. Louisville has the ball on the 8-yard-line. 

13:52 fourth quarter, Ford catches a reception in the flat, goes 8 yards for a touchdown. Louisville leads 31-14. 

10:25 fourth quarter, Stephen Guidry goes 18 yards for a touchdown reception, a quick answer for Mississippi State. Louisville leads 31-21. 

Hawkins picks up a first down, Louisville nears midfield. It's an important possession for the Cardinals, using clock and adding to its lead. 

8:07 third quarter, Louisville facing a third-and-13 after an incomplete pass. 

Cunningham is stopped at midfield. Louisville will punt on fourth-and-8. 

7:12 fourth quarter, King drops a punt on the 11-yard-line, Mississippi State will take over. 

Hill has two carries and a reception, Mississippi State looking to him after he has just four carries prior to this possession. 

4:00 fourth quarter, Burns misses a near interception, which probably would have gone for a touchdown, on fourth-and-4. Louisville takes over on the 48-yard-line. 

3:55 fourth quarter, Hawkins runs for five yards. Mississippi State calls a timeout. The clock is a big factor at this point for the Bulldogs, trailing by two possessions. 

Hawkins goes 24 yards for a first down, Louisville inside the red zone. 

3:06 fourth quarter, Mississippi State calls a timeout. 

2:13 fourth quarter, Hawkins scores from five yards, Louisville leads 38-21. 

0:27 fourth quarter, Osirus Mitchell catches a 24-yard touchdown. Louisville leads Mississippi State 38-28 after the Bulldog score. 

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