STARKVILLE, Miss. — The Mississippi State football team will host the Auburn Tigers on Saturday for a 6:30 p.m. CT Senior Day game. The contest will be televised by SEC Network.
MSU and Auburn were scheduled to play Nov. 14, but the game was pushed back because of COVID-19 issues within the MSU program.
The Bulldogs and Tigers are meeting for the 94th time in program history. The Tigers own a 64-26-2 lead in the all-time series. The two teams have evenly split the last eight matchups. MSU has won three of the last four in Starkville.
Both teams are looking for a strong finish to disappointing seasons. Mississippi State head coach Mike Leach has not had the best debut season. Gus Malzahn’s eighth season at Auburn hasn’t gone as he hoped either. Leach has the Bulldogs at 2-6, while Malzahn has the Tigers at 5-4.
Both teams are entering the game on two-game losing streaks, though the Bulldogs lost both games in more completive games. Auburn lost 31-20 to No. 5 Texas A&M and 42-13 to No. 1 Alabama. MSU lost 31-24 to both then-No. 13 Georgia and rival Ole Miss.
Mississippi State freshman quarterback Will Rogers has completed 169 of 229 passes for 1,312 yards, six touchdowns and four interceptions. His 73.8 completion percentage ranks second in the Southeastern Conference. He led all NCAA quarterbacks in completions during the month of November (121) and was the only quarterback in the NCAA with 1,000 yards passing and zero interceptions last month. He has thrown 167 consecutive passes without an interception, the second-longest streak in the SEC and sixth-longest in the FBS.
Freshman running back Jo’Quavious Marks has carried the ball 45 times for 157 yards rushing and a score. MSU’s ground game isn’t much of a factor, though, as it ranks 127th nationally. Freshman wide receiver Jaden Walley has hauled in 35 catches for 462 yards receiving and a TD.
In total, the Bulldogs have had 21 first-time starters this season, tied for third-most in the Power Five.
Auburn sophomore quarterback Bo Nix has completed 174 of 283 passes for 1,998 yards, 10 TDs and seven interceptions. He is also second on the team in rushing with 91 attempts for 332 yards and another six scores. In last year’s meeting, Nix had one of his best games in a 56-23 victory. He passed for 335 yards and two TDs and ran for 56 yards and another score.
Freshman running back Tank Bigsby, who has been dealing with a hip injury, leads the ground attack with 642 yards rushing and five scores on 112 carries. He rushed nine times for 76 yards in last week’s loss to Texas A&M. Junior running back Shaun Shivers has rushed 51 times for 257 yards rushing and a score.
Junior wide receiver Seth Williams is Auburn’s top receiver with 631 yards receiving and three TDs on 39 catches, while junior wide receiver Anthony Schwartz has hauled in a team-high 49 catches for 604 yards and three scores. Senior receiver Eli Stove is third on the team with 307 yards receiving and three TDs on 35 catches.