Ellis Puts Egg Bowl in Historic Perspective

Veteran Bulldog broadcaster Jim Ellis has seen dozens of Egg Bowls. Ellis believes this weekend's contest between Mississippi State and Ole Miss will be memorable for several reasons. With a potential 11th regular season win and potential berths into the SEC Championship game and FBS national playoffs, there has never been more on the line for the Bulldogs as they head to Oxford.

"There all big to me," Ellis explained of the battle for in state bragging rights. "I think this one is big, because of the implications of it. If you win this game, you're still in the hunt for making the playoffs. I think the playoffs have been good for the popularity of college football. It's got everyone talking about it.

"As far as the game this weekend goes, if Ole Miss had continued to play really well and both teams were going into the game with just one loss, I think it would really have been a huge game from a national perspective.

"No matter what the other circumstances are, this is a really important game from an Ole Miss and Mississippi State perspective, but I don't know how it can get much bigger than it's always been every year since I have been watching the game."

Mississippi State has had some historic moments in 2014, including the program's first ever #1 national ranking. With so many big moments this season, Mississippi State fans believe this could be the year of all years.

If it is to be THE year, then the Bulldogs must beat Ole Miss and retain possession of the Golden Egg.

"I don't think the season would be complete," said Ellis of a season without a win over Ole Miss. "I don't think anybody on that football team would be satisfied with how the season went if they lose that final ball game.

"There have been some bad years for both ball clubs that have gotten a nice little punch at the end of the year when they win that ball game. It's made things much better.

"If you look at the whole body of work, this is going to be a great season for Mississippi State, but certainly it's not complete if you don't win that ball game."

Ellis has seen his share of Bulldog signal callers over the years. Dak Prescott ranks right up there with some of the Bulldog greats as both a leader and a player.

"From a leadership standpoint, he has to sort of being around the top of that list," said Ellis. "We have had some good ones. As a running quarterback, he has to be one of the best. We have had two or three good ones. You have to think about John Bond and Don Smith and Chris Relf was a big and strong running quarterback.

"Dak is certainly in that category. I wouldn't say he is the best passer that we have ever had here, but he is certainly a very good passer. I think what he has is a body of work where he does all things pretty well and some things quite well and he has good leadership skills as well as a very good supporting cast around him.

"When you put all of that together, he is having the greatest season of any quarterback in Mississippi State history."

Earlier this year, Mississippi State mourned the loss of the voice of the Bulldogs, Jack Cristil. As a close personal friend and colleague, Ellis can say with authority that Cristil would have enjoyed this season immensely.

"Jack would have loved this kind of year," Ellis shared. "He loved it when the Bulldogs had success. Certainly he would be very proud of this team. He would have proud of what this school has been able to accomplished this year.

"Jack had some really good moments. He had some great Egg Bowl wins and Jack loved basketball. He loved the year we went to the Final Four and the SEC Championships. Jack just loved Mississippi State sports.

"Jack loved Mississippi State #1 and he loved sports. He did a great job of handling the successes and the lack of successes, but he certainly would have enjoyed this season. There is no question about it."

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