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Posted on Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 6:30 p.m.

The mega guide to the Gator Bowl: Michigan vs. Mississippi State

By Jim Knight


Melanie Maxwell |

WHO: Michigan (7-5, 3-5 Big Ten) vs. No. 21 Mississippi State (8-4, 4-4 SEC).

WHERE: EverBank Field, Jacksonville, Fla.

WHEN: 1:30 p.m. Saturday.

ODDS: Mississippi State is favored by 4 1/2 points, according to

SERIES RECORD: First meeting.

BROADCAST INFORMATION: TV: ESPN2; Radio: Michigan Sports Network (local affiliates), Sirius Ch. 122, XM Ch. 143.

MICHIGAN: Team Stats | Team Rankings | Roster

MISSISSIPPI STATE: Team Stats | Team Rankings | Roster

RUNDOWN: Two teams, two coaches in the news all week at the Gator Bowl. Dan Mullen is 13-11 in two seasons at Mississippi State and was rewarded with a $10.6 million, four-year contract this week.

"I want to be at Mississippi State, and Mississippi State wants me," Mullen said. "So everybody ends up happy."

And Michigan and Rich Rodriguez? Depending on which rumor you follow, Rodriguez may already be headed to Maryland. Or at least out of a job and replaced by former Michigan quarterback and current Stanford head coach Jim Harbaugh. Or Brady Hoke. Or somebody else.

Michigan athletic director Dave Brandon said - several times - that he’ll evaluate Rodriguez and his program (15-21 in three seasons) after the Gator Bowl.

On the field, the talk from both teams centers on Michigan quarterback Denard Robinson. has been previewing the game all week. Here’s a look back at everything Michigan vs. Mississippi State-related that can be found on our site.

FRIDAY • Pete Bigelow writes that Tate Forcier's future with Michigan football team is 'undetermined' • Wide receiver Martavious Odoms is back, and that pleases Rodriguez. Rich Rezler has more on Odoms and other topics in a notebook from the Gator Bowl press conference • Rezler talked to Michigan fans at the downtown Gator Bowl parade and they were happy to be back at a bowl game • Bigelow and Michael Rothstein analyze the matchup in a video report • A slideshow from photographer Melanie Maxwell captures the scene from the Michigan and Mississippi State press conference Friday morning • Finally, Maxwell put together the following slideshow from the Michigan alumni association pep rally and the Gator Bowl parade:

THURSDAY • Backup quarterback Tate Forcier was ruled ineligible to play in the Gator Bowl • Rodriguez's uncertain future concerns the Michigan football players • Players on Michigan's defense aim to help put Wolverines "back on the map." • Pete Bigelow on hiring football coaches: You don't necessarily need to hire a big name • Michigan equipment manager Jon Falk talks about what's needed for a bowl week in a video from

WEDNESDAY • Mississippi State's game plan is simple - stop Denard Robinson

TUESDAY • Michigan fans embrace chance to watch the Wolverines in a bowl game • Michigan quarterback Denard Robinson says he's 100 percent healthy • Pete Bigelow played host to a Gator Bowl live chat. You can catch up on the conversation

MONDAY • The Michigan football team arrived in Jacksonville on Monday and provided a video.

EARLIER • Pete Bigelow says the Gator Bowl is a chance for Denard Robinson to prove he's more than a running quarterback • Former Michigan star Desmond Howard says Rich Rodriguez needs an impressive Gator Bowl showing • Pete Bigelow says four bowl games against SEC teams puts Big Tens' reputation on the line • Mississippi State players say you can never let up if you're going to stop Denard Robinson • Don't know much about Mississippi State? Rich Rezler has you covered with everything you need to know, including why the cowbells are so darn important

OTHER COVERAGE • ESPN's Gator Bowl preview • Gator Bowl preview at • Jackson Clarion Ledger: Dan Mullen is now the face of Mississippi State athletics • Jackson Clarion Ledger: More Mississippi State coverage


MORE FOOTBALL! Citrus Bowl Michigan State faces Alabama at 1 p.m. Saturday in the Citrus Bowl. has complete coverage of the Spartans, including: • Michigan State is a maturing team under coach Mark Dantonio, Greg Johnson writes • Quarterbacks Kirk Cousins and Greg McElroy respect each other • Alabama coach Nick Saban does his best not to fire up Michigan State



Sat, Jan 1, 2011 : 6:34 p.m.

all you rich rod supporters any questions or any doubts now that he's coached his last game here?Are you gonna follow your king to Maryland

Huron 74

Sat, Jan 1, 2011 : 4:52 p.m.

Boys and girls, I think we need to look up the ladder to find the right correction to the abysmal and embarassing situation with UOM football. We all know if they don't dump RR now, we're going to lose fans, respect, recruits. But the problem is one step higher. Dave B was handed the job of running one of the most sucessful pizza chains in the world. They came out with a "new" pizza recipe after Tom Monaghan spent decades perfecting the process. Hot shot CEOs like Brandon may do well at certain things, but their egos make them think they can do anything. That, I think is where we need to clip our losses.


Sat, Jan 1, 2011 : 12:23 p.m.

Long live the King... at Maryland, or Clemson, or... Happy New Year. May God bless all with a great year in 2011.


Sat, Jan 1, 2011 : 11:05 a.m.

Long live the King!


Sat, Jan 1, 2011 : 10:44 a.m.

Absolutely! Bring back Harbaugh!

rick halpert

Sat, Jan 1, 2011 : 10:36 a.m.

UM has too much integrity and class to be coached by Rich R regardless of his win/loss record. And that record alone is enough to search for Harbaugh, Miles or another coach who understands UM's great tradition.


Sat, Jan 1, 2011 : 10:22 a.m.

Save your time. No need to watch the game. Here's the summary of how it's going to happen. 21-21 at halftime. DR goes down in early 3rd qtr. Blue defense tires from being on the field too long. UM misses 3 field goal attempts throughout the game. Final score: MSU 38, UM 21...and that's the way it is.


Sat, Jan 1, 2011 : 9:55 a.m.

Wow, Mick, happy New Year too you also! I don't watch much football but I love Michigan too so let's go BLUE!!


Sat, Jan 1, 2011 : 6:23 a.m.

Happy New Year everybody. So in my continuing obsession w/the U-M Football program Early Jan 1st. I have a one sentence ode to Mr. Kirk Herbstreit Now when reading this, try to read it like an Italian wiseguy/goodfella would say it, ahem, ahem and it goes like this: "Hey Herbie, do me a fava, don't do me any fava's, alright, over hear!!! So, Desmond, please, on "College Game Day", it is on you buddy to keep your colleague on a leash so that he doesn't try and sabotage M's chances of anything going down that we're not privy to yet,because old Herbie over there wants to be the man with the scoop. Ok, Go Blue!!!! I want a win then I want a new coach, sorry RR, I wish you a better and more comfortable career somewhere else that will benefit both parties. In AA, it just doesn't work, we can be exciting without having to be gimicky, not in AA. See AA is a special place, it doesn't need gimicks. I love The University of Michigan