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No. 24 MSU bound for the TaxSlayer Bowl

 

Brett Hudson

 

 

STARKVILLE -- Mississippi State's eighth consecutive bowl game is taking it to a familiar destination. 

 

No. 24 MSU (8-4) will go to Jacksonville, Florida, to face Louisville (8-4) in the TaxSlayer Bowl 11 a.m. Central Dec. 30 at EverBank Field. It is MSU's third appearance in that bowl in the streak, after beating Michigan in 2011 and losing to Northwestern in the 2013 game. 

 

"We are excited to accept a bid to the TaxSlayer Bowl and cap this season off the right way," MSU Director of Athletics John Cohen said in a statement. "I want to congratulate our team for a terrific season and earning the right to play one more. We get to do it in an NFL stadium. Our group of seniors is one victory away from tying the school record for wins by a senior class. We look forward to seeing our Bulldog family turn out in Jacksonville as we play in a Florida bowl for the fifth time in eight seasons."  

 

The two programs shared ties for the entire 2017 season after former MSU defensive coordinator Peter Sirmon ended up at Louisville once Todd Grantham did the opposite, moving from Louisville to MSU. Grantham followed former MSU coach Dan Mullen to Florida and will not coach the bowl game. Running backs coach and special teams coordinator Greg Knox is MSU's interim head coach for the bowl game. 

 

MSU said the TaxSlayer Bowl will allow cowbells at the game. 

 

MSU interim coach Greg Knox said on the teleconference that quarterbacks coach Brett Elliott will be the offensive placated in Mullen's absence and safeties coach Ron English will call it he defense in Grantham's absence. Knox said D.J. Looney will coach the offensive line and quality control assistants will step in to coach the wide receivers and linebackers.  

 

Knox has reportedly been offered a position on Mullen's staff at Florida.  

 

"I have not entered into any agreement with the University of Florida," Knox said. "My focus is entirely on this team and this bowl game." 

 

This story will be updated with more tomorrow. 

 

Follow Dispatch sports writer Brett Hudson on Twitter @Brett_Hudson.

 

 

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