STARKVILLE, Miss. - Few college football rivalries possess as much disdain for one another as Ole Miss and Mississippi State. The annual ‘Egg Bowl’ as it is called will take place on the Bulldogs’ home field on Thanksgiving night at 7:30, and this game is loaded with possible NFL players at quarterback and wide receiver.
Leading the way are two quarterbacks that continue to sling it all across the yard, Matt Corral for the Rebels, and Will Rogers for the Bulldogs.
Can either of the two teams slow down the other?
Here’s a statistical look at the two quarterbacks during recent games, and some of their offensive skill players, as those numbers will help to tell fans what they should expect when these two teams collide. Let’s start with the visiting Rebels.
Matt Corral Continues to Produce Despite an Ankle Injury
During his last three games, Corral only threw four touchdown passes, but the Rebels scored 27 versus Liberty, 37 versus Texas A&M, and 31 versus Vanderbilt.
Also of note, Corral has been battling an ankle injury that’s kept him from really using his legs. That’s one of his biggest weapons, as his 30 carries for 195 yards against Tennessee shows.
Despite not being able to run as much as he would like, Corral’s recent passing numbers are still good. His numbers during the last three contests combined for 72/101, 71.3%, 902 yards, four touchdowns and just one interception.
The Receivers for the Rebels
His favorite target has been wide receiver Dontario Drummond, a big-bodied player at 6’1” and 220 pounds. He’s a difficult matchup for opposing teams. He missed the game against Liberty, but caught six passes for 49 yards and a touchdown during the win over Texas A&M, and he came back last week with seven receptions for 79 yards and a touchdown against hapless Vanderbilt.
For the season, Drummond recorded 53 receptions, 783 yards, 14.8 average, and eight touchdowns. Even if Drummond is not able to catch several passes, Ole Miss has a bevvy of wide receivers for Corral to pass the football.
Braylon Sanders (missed two games): 22 receptions, 486 yards, 22.1 average, and three touchdowns.
Jahcour Pearson (missed one game): 25 receptions, 389 yards, 15.6 average.
Jonathan Mingo (missed seven games): 16 receptions, 292 yards, 18.3 average, and three touchdowns.
Dennis Jackson (missed two games): 12 receptions, 244 yards, 20.4 average, two touchdowns.
For Mississippi State, there’s an incredible amount of offensive firepower as well.
Will Rogers Leads the Bulldogs' Aerial Attack
The Bulldogs have continued to score well, with 28 points versus Arkansas, 43 against Auburn, and 55 put up against Tennessee State. Rogers was a huge reason for those points being scored.
During his past three games, Rogers’ statistics include 108/137, 78.8%, 1,223 yards, 15 touchdowns and just one interception. He’s been incredible.
Also of note, he throws to a variety of wide receivers, with one player standing out.
Makai Polk now deserves to be considered among the nation’s top receivers. He is already at 88 receptions, 891 yards, 10.1 average, and nine touchdowns. The 6’3”, 200 pound pass catcher from California is capable of working the underneath routes and finding the dead spots in the zone, as well as making plays after the catch.
Rogers will certainly find Polk as often as possible, and he’s going to be throwing the football to these three receivers as well.
The Receivers for the Bulldogs
Jaden Walley: 47 receptions, 569 yards, 12.1 average, and five touchdowns.
Austin Williams: 45 receptions, 519 yards, 11.5 average, and four touchdowns.
Malik Heath: 33 receptions, 437 yards, 13.2 average, and five touchdowns.
Also of note, freshman wide receiver Rara Thomas did not play last week versus Tennessee State. He has been playing more and certainly producing. Against Vanderbilt, Kentucky and Arkansas, he established himself within the Mississippi State receiving rotation with 10 catches for 140 yards and four touchdowns. If he is back healthy that certainly helps the Bulldogs’ chances of knocking off their rivals from Oxford, Miss.
Ole Miss 38 Mississippi State 34
For UCF coverage and recruiting information go to: The Daily Knight podcast. For more college football, UCF and recruiting information, go to Twitter: @fbscout_florida and @UCF_FanNation, as well as my YouTube Channel and Instagram page. Like and Subscribe!