STARKVILLE (MSU Athletics, Ole Miss Sports) – The SEC and ESPN announced Wednesday the 110th Battle for the Golden Egg – the annual rivalry football game between Mississippi State and Ole Miss – will be played at 6:30 p.m. Thanksgiving Day, November 28 in 2013 at Davis-Wade Stadium in Starkville.
"This is a tremendous opportunity for our state's largest football game to be played on the largest stage of a crowded football weekend," director of athletics Scott Stricklin said. "Some of the most memorable games in Egg Bowl history have come on Thanksgiving night, and hopefully more great memories can be made for Bulldog fans on this holiday evening.
Over the past three seasons, Egg Bowl ratings have averaged approximately 481,000 viewers, with each of the games broadcast Saturday evening on ESPNU. During the same three-year period, Thanksgiving Day contests on ESPN during primetime have averaged 3.6 million viewers per game.
The Battle for the Golden Egg has been played on Thanksgiving night 20 times previously, with the most recent occasions coming from 1998 to 2003.
Playing on Thanksgiving Day is nothing new in Bulldog football history, as Mississippi State football teams played on the Thursday holiday 24 times between 1902 and 1932.
"This is always, without question, the biggest game of the season for us," head coach Dan Mullen said. "Playing on Thanksgiving night allows a national audience to see how important this game is in our state."
"I think it's great for this storied rivalry to return to Thanksgiving Day," said second-year Rebel head coach Hugh Freeze. "There were so many memorable moments from our meetings on that holiday in the past, and I hope to see a big Rebel turnout in Starkville this year."
Ole Miss holds a 61-42-6 all-time record against Mississippi State, including a 55-25-5 lead in the Battle for the Golden Egg that began in 1927. Last year, the Rebels won state bragging rights with a 41-24 victory in Oxford.
The Rebels shut out the Bulldogs 31-0 in Starkville in their last Thanksgiving meeting, which gave Ole Miss a share of the 2003 Southeastern Conference Western Division Championship. It was the end of a six-year stretch from 1998-2003 that the Egg Bowl was played on Thanksgiving.
The in-state SEC foes have played on Thanksgiving 25 times, and Ole Miss holds a 15-9-1 edge in those games. They have battled for the Golden Egg on the holiday 16 times, with the Rebels leading 10-5-1.
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