Louisville (7-5, 5-3 ACC) meets Mississippi State (6-6, 3-5 SEC) this afternoon in the Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl at Nissan Stadium. Kickoff is slated for 3 p.m. and the game will be televised nationally by ESPN.
The game will feature two of the nation’s more intriguing running backs in Mississippi State’s Kylin Hill (5-11, 215, Jr.) and Louisville’s Javian Hawkins (5-9, 182, R-Fr.) Hill, who will forego his senior season to enter the 2020 NFL draft, led the SEC with 1,347 rushing yards and earned first team all-conference honors. Hawkins was seventh in the nation, and first among freshman, with 1,420 yards rushing. He was named a freshman All-American by The Athletic.
This will be the 22nd annual Music City Bowl and a crowd in excess of 50,000 is expected to be on hand. It is also the second Music City Bowl appearance for both Louisville and Mississippi State.
The Cardinals defeated Texas A&M 27-21 in the 2015 game behind freshman quarterback Lamar Jackson who rushed for 226 yards and passed for 227. Louisville has not won a postseason game since.
Mississippi State appeared in the 2011 contest when the Bulldogs topped Wake Forest, 23-17. State led by two entering the fourth quarter before running back Vick Ballard scored on a 72-yard run to put the game away. Ballard finished the day with two touchdowns and 180 yards rushing.