Jacksonville, FL. — January 1, 2011
It was a scene of unbridled joy to match anything in recent Progressive Gator Bowls.
Tens of thousands of Mississippi State fans stayed behind long after the 52-14 domination over Michigan Saturday to yell themselves hoarse and tirelessly ring their cowbells.
Bulldogs defensive end Pernell McPhee took the Gator Bowl trophy on a victory lap around EverBank Field, allowing fans to touch the $30,000 bauble.
The band played the fight song, then the alma mater. Hugs, shoulder bumps and high fives were exchanged.
“It was fantastic,” said Bulldogs’ coach Dan Mullen, the architect of a turnaround from a 5-7 record last season to 9-4 and the first MSU victory in a New Year’s Day Bowl game since the Clinton Administration. “We’ve gone from average to good. Now we want to go from good to great.”
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