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Dan Mullen - Ole Miss Week


Opening Statement...
“Obviously this is the biggest week of the year for us, as it is every year. Rivalry week. I know this game means a lot to our team, our players, our students, our faculty, our fans, the people of Mississippi. This is as big as it gets each and every year. We certainly treat it as the biggest game of the year. Our guys are gonna be excited to get out there on the field, excited to go play and find a way to keep the trophy.”
How big beating Ole Miss three-straight times would be and its effect on recruiting...
“It always helps in a positive manner to win that game, head-to-head, recruiting wise. For us, I look at each year independently, because it would be a long time not to have that trophy till you get to play again after this game. The number of consecutive years we’ve won it I don’t pay attention to. There’s just so much focus on making sure that Saturday night, that trophy is staying in here. It’s not ‘over so many years it’s done this or that.’ This year is what’s important.
On saying ‘We’re never gonna lose to this team again’...
“I said that to our players when I first got here too. The first team meeting we had, we talked about that. The mindset you have to have, our guys have to know that this game is very, very different. This is a must-win game, every year, no matter what your record is. This is the one they remember. This is the one our fans remember, our students remember, and the people of Mississippi remember. This is the game we have to win every year and we certainly believe we’re gonna win it every year.”
On gaining a knowledge of MSU Football and Egg Bowl history...
“You just look into it and you watch it and one thing I think that really does jump up in this game is that records don’t matter. When you get into that rivalry game, there is more to play for this week than whatever your record may be coming into this game. Somebody is going to win a championship Saturday night, no matter how your season has gone; you have an opportunity to win a championship Saturday night. When you look at the history of this game and what it means to our people and our fans, but also what it means to your season, you know big a game it can be. It can change the outlook of how you view the season you’ve had.”
On if this year’s game is any different with a bowl game on the line...
“Nope. This game is much bigger than any of that. Rivalry games are just different. They’re a different feel for your players, a different feel in you preparation. They are a different feel in everything. I will be a lot more upset not winning that trophy rather than not making a bowl game. That is how important this game is.”
On the senior class heading into this last home game, especially Charles Mitchell...
“Charles is a guy that was apart of a group of guys that was already here when I got here, some walk-ons, some not. We don’t have a very big senior class, but it is special for guys like Charles Mitchell, Quentin Saulsberry, Wade Bonner, these guys that have really bought in from when we first got here until now and decided, as young players, that ‘things are gonna change here, possibly different than what they were recruited to. They decided to buy-in and stick it out and it is great to see these guys have success. Success on the field, in the classroom, in their personal lives. And I know they are going to have a lot more future success, hopefully from all the values they have learned as being apart of this program and this university.”
On playing a team (Ole Miss) that has nothing to lose...
“In this game, it’s not that they have nothing to lose, it’s that both teams have everything to gain. When you are in the state of Mississippi, everything is that Golden Egg trophy. That is everything, as it pertains to this state. I think both teams have everything to win and that is how we view it. All I have heard for the past year is now they know how important a game it is and they have circled this game, starting last year and it’s the biggest game of the year for them. And for our guys, they know that there’s a clock that always counts down to this game, so they certainly know how important this game is. I think for both teams, the whole focus is as if this was a one-game season and that this game makes or breaks your season.”



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