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RECAP: Mississippi State stuns No. 17 Auburn 43-34

Nov 13, 2021; Auburn, Alabama, USA;  Mississippi State Bulldogs quarterback Will Rogers (2) throws a pass during the first quarter against the Auburn Tigers at Jordan-Hare Stadium.  Mandatory Credit: John Reed-USA TODAY Sports
Nov 13, 2021; Auburn, Alabama, USA; Mississippi State Bulldogs quarterback Will Rogers (2) throws a pass during the first quarter against the Auburn Tigers at Jordan-Hare Stadium. Mandatory Credit: John Reed-USA TODAY Sports

Will Rogers fired six touchdown passes as Mississippi State scored 40 unanswered points to erase a 25-point first-half deficit, stunning No. 17 Auburn 43-34 on Saturday afternoon at Auburn, Ala.

With the Bulldogs (6-4, 4-3 SEC) trailing 28-3 late in the first half, Rogers led a school-record comeback, giving Mississippi State the lead for good with 13:28 remaining.

Mississippi State received two touchdown receptions from Makai Polk and Jamire Calvin, while Dillon Johnson and Malik Heath caught one TD each.

Rogers completed 17 straight passes at one point in the second half and finished 44 of 55 for 415 yards and no interceptions.

The outing was his eighth consecutive game with at least 300 yards and ninth this season. He had 294 yards in his only game where he didn’t reach at least 300 this season.

Tank Bigsby scored two rushing touchdowns for Auburn, while Ja’Varrarius Johnson had four catches, 102 yards for the Tigers, with a TD.

Luke Deal and Kobe Hudson notched TD receptions for Auburn (6-4, 3-3). Hudson had eight catches for 107 yards.

Bo Nix was 27 of 41 for 377 yards with two passing TDs but did not play on the final series.

Entering on a six-quarter stretch when the Tigers failed to reach paydirt, they found the end zone on their first four possessions in the game, with Bigsby scoring the first on a 5-yard run at 12:37 of the opening quarter.

After Nolan McCord’s 34-yard kick for the Bulldogs, Nix tossed a long lateral to Johnson, who cut inside and sprinted away on a 57-yard scoring jaunt at 4:26 for a 14-3 edge.

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Auburn took a 21-3 lead in the second quarter when Nix found Deal cruising across the back of the end zone. Hudson made a spectacular one-handed catch in the corner with a defensive back draped on him for a 28-3 lead.

The Bulldogs halted the half’s onslaught with a 4-yard pass to Polk from Rogers, who completed 11 straight late in the half.

In the third, Rogers caught fire and tossed 3-yard scores to Calvin and Johnson – the latter capping a 98-yard drive – as the Bulldogs trailed 28-23.

After Cameron Young’s block of a 35-yard field, Rogers put the Bulldogs up 29-28 with his second TD to Polk, but they missed their second straight two-point conversion.

Rogers’ fifth score, a short pass to Calvin with 9:35 remaining, pushed the lead to 36-28.

The Bulldogs thwarted a fake punt with 8:30 left, and Malik Heath cught the final Rogers TD pass, a 6-yarder with 5:31 remaining.

Bigsby scored on a 1-yard run with 3:37 left, but Fred Peters intercepted Nix’s pass on the two-point conversion attempt.

–Field Level Media