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Ole Miss Week 12 Opponent Preview: Mississippi State Bulldogs Offense

Our college football preview series continues this week with the Rebels' Week 12 matchup.
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OXFORD, Miss. -- After losing big to the Arkansas Razorbacks 42-27 on the road in Fayetteville, Ark., the Ole Miss Rebels return home for one of the most anticipated games of the year, the Egg Bowl.

The Rebels are closing out the regular season playing their in-state rival, the Mississippi State Bulldogs. Ole Miss has won the Golden Egg the last two seasons, and currently leads the series all-time versus Mississippi State with a record of 64-45-6.

The Bulldogs, coached by Mike Leach, are 7-4 (3-4 in SEC) entering Egg Bowl week. Leach is 0-2 in the rivalry game and will be expected to win his first Egg Bowl this year in enemy territory.

Here is an overview of the Mississippi State team that will travel to Oxford, Miss., for the annual Egg Bowl on Thanksgiving. Kickoff is set for 6:00 p.m. CT, and the game will be televised on ESPN.

Offensive Players to Watch

Passing: Will Rogers

2022 Stats: 359 completions, 3,474 yards, 32 touchdowns, five interceptions, 141.6 passer rating.

Rogers is having another productive fall in Leach's signature air raid offense, throwing at least one touchdown in every game so far. Slowing down Rogers will need to be the number one priority of the Ole Miss defense on Thursday.

Rushing: Jo'quavious Marks

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2022 Stats: 89 carries, 456 rushing yards, eight touchdowns, averaging 5.1 yards per carry.

Marks may not be getting the same workload that his Ole Miss counterparts are, but the Mississippi State tailback has made his touches count this fall. Marks sealed the game for the Bulldogs in overtime against the Auburn Tigers with a five-yard run at the goal line in Week 10. Marks has split carries with junior running back Dillon Johnson this season.

Receiving: Rara Thomas

2022 Stats: 42 receptions, 599 receiving yards, and six touchdowns.

After hauling in just 18 receptions his freshman year, Thomas has become Mississippi State's No. 1 wideout in his sophomore campaign. Thomas currently leads the Bulldogs in every receiving category except touchdowns.

You can follow Ben King on Twitter at @BKing_2023.

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