MID-SOUTH BOWL: U OF M VS. OLE MISS
After one game each under their belts both Memphis (1-0) and Mississippi (1-0) are showing what it takes to be successful this college football season.
As you may already know, Ole Miss got past University of Louisiana, Monroe by a final score of 31 to 3, and as far as the Memphis Tigers are concerned beating Murray State by 46 points is a great way to build a so-called bowl season; oh, by the way, the final score was 52 to 6. And as fate would have it both teams are on a collision course set to settle the score on Saturday, September 7th in Oxford, Mississippi in an 11:30 a.m. kick-off.
For Memphis senior offensive tackle Wade Smith a road game at Ole Miss is fine by him. When you go into hostile situations those are my favorite games, said Smith. Thats what you look forward to, somewhere and quieting the crowd and I think thats the mind set that we have to take into every away game.
Although Memphis and Mississippi are eager to play in what I have coined the Mid-South Bowl in effort to garner the second win of the young seasons both teams remain respectful of each others football prowess. There's only one problem; no matter how improved both clubs looked last weekend only one team can walk away with a victory when the Rebels and Tigers go head to head on the grid iron in what many Memphians and Mississippians are calling the game of the year. Meanwhile, until the pigskin is kicked off and the final score is determined both sides continue pondering the outcome and the other teams game.
I know that Coach West will have them well prepared and fundamentally ready and theyre going to do their job, said Eli Manning, the Ole Miss junior Quarterback who many fans regard as a Heisman Trophy candidate. We just gotta really execute and just do what were supposed to do and not make mistakes.
While the fans were celebrating, smiling, and making their ways out of the Liberty Bowl stands Memphis Head Coach Tommy West was already contemplating plans for ways to beat Ole Miss on the gridiron in Week Two.Danny Wimprines a year older;we've got some people we can get the ball in our hands. If our offense will just take what people give you and then our people will make plays well be fine, said West during a press conference.
Coach West was also passionate about focusing on his club instead of putting a lot of energy into what Ole Miss or any other team may try to do this season as Memphis faces serious conference USA competition. I think you have to worry about your team and just make sure your team goes out and plays as good as they can play and you know the best team should win, said West.
Meanwhile, some 75 miles down the highway in Oxford, Mississippi Ole Miss head coach David Cutcliff thinks about the other U of M and how explosive the Tigers are with the pigskin. I knew Memphis was good coming in but this is certainly the best Memphis team I've seen, Coach Cutcliff said at a press conference. They have weapons on offense and on defense and well have to be at our best to beat this Memphis team so it should be a great challenge and a great ball game come Saturday.
This game is expected to be a sell-out as Mid-South area football fans will flock to the pristine campus of the University of Mississippi to witness college football at its best. The newly renovated Vaught-Hemingway Stadium now makes it possible for at 60,580 fans to be seated inside the Venue. Another unique experience about attending a college football game at Ole Miss is The Grove, which is sure to become a memory carved in your mind when you think of Ole Miss home football games.
Basically, the Grove (or campus park, if you will) becomes a picnic site for thousands of fans ranging in ages from infant to great grandparents. Football fans who do not plan on attending the Tigers and Rebels game live can watch the game on Jefferson Pilot Sports for an 11:30 a.m. kickoff. Just be sure to check local listings for station details.
As trivia would have it this weekends Ole Miss vs. Memphis game marks the 52nd time in which these two universities have met on the football field. Ole Miss leads the series 41-8-2. Finally, the Mid-South Bowl continues next year when Memphis and Ole Miss meet in the Liberty Bowl on September 6, 2003.