Wednesday, October 31, 2012
It was a tough football weekend for most Mississippi colleges. The only two four-year schools to win on the last Saturday of October were Ole Miss and Belhaven. Everyone else lost, and most lost badly.
Ole Miss needed to defeat Arkansas to keep its bowl hopes alive. The Razorbacks righted their ship after a disastrous start by winning two straight and are trying to stay alive for the postseason.
Arkansas started fast with a 10-0 lead in the first quarter. Ole Miss answered by outscoring the Razorbacks 21-7 in the second quarter to take a 24-17 halftime lead.
The Rebels led most of the second half, but Arkansas rallied one last time. Arkansas scored 10 points in the fourth quarter to tie the game up at 27-27 with just over two minutes to go.
Ole Miss quarterback Bo Wallace took the Rebels down the field on a great drive to set up a 31-yard field goal. Bryson Rose, who also hit 27- and 53-yard field goals, banged home the winning kick as time expired.
The win moves Ole Miss to 5-3 on the season. The Rebels only need one more win to reach Bowl eligibility.
Belhaven (5-4) earned its first shutout victory of the season with its 35-0 win on the road over Faulkner University. The Blazers have won three straight games and are now 4-1 in Mid-South Conference.
With just two games left in the season, Belhaven still has a chance to win its division in their conference and reach the playoffs. The Blazers should be proud of how they bounced back after starting the season with three straight losses.
Mississippi State (7-1) had a social-media frenzy going before its game against Alabama. The Bulldog faithful believed in an 8-0 start for MSU, and posted all over Twitter and Facebook.
The only problem: Alabama didn’t get the memo. The Crimson Tide ran away with this game with a 24-0 lead at halftime and never looked back.
MSU is a better team than when Dan Mullen arrived in Starkville, but the Bulldogs still have work to do to reach Alabama’s talent level. The Crimson Tide rolled to a 38-7 win.
The dumpster fire that is Southern Miss football continued to burn against Rice on Saturday. USM was down 21-10 at halftime and never got close in the second half.
USM (0-8) has gone from a team that won 12 games and a C-USA championship to a team that can’t even compete against the lower-end teams of C-USA. Golden Eagles fans are just praying the end of the season comes quickly.
Mississippi Valley State (2-6) has a championship defense, but its offense is just not matching up. The Delta Devils fell this week 10-0 to Arkansas-Pine Bluff as the stout Valley defense kept the sluggish MVSU offense in the game until the end.
Millsaps (6-2) dropped its final road game of the year 35-24 against Trinity (Texas) in a nonconference game. The Trinity Tigers used a 21-point third quarter burst to pull away from Millsaps. The Majors finish the season with two home games and a chance to finish undefeated in conference in their final game.
Mississippi College (2-6) lost its homecoming game 34-24 to East Texas Baptist. MC was doomed after getting outscored 27-16 in the second and third quarter. The Choctaws are guaranteed a losing season after this defeat.
Hinds Community College (4-5) finished its season with a 26-16 win over Pearl River Community College, and Holmes Community College (5-4) rolled Coahoma Community College 49-3 to finish the season. The Bulldogs outperformed many expectations this season.
Jackson State and Alcorn State picked the right weekend to have their off weeks—they’ll be back in action this week.