MEMPHIS — They are two programs that haven’t played in ten years with Mississippi State holding a decided edge in it’s border war with the Tigers, having won 12 straight games.

As a matter of fact, the last time the U of M beat the Bulldogs was way back in 1993, which could actually be a good omen for the Tigers heading into Saturday’s showdown at the Liberty Bowl.

Back in 1993, a guy named Isaac Bruce led the Tigers to a 45-35 win in Starkville.

Saturday, Bruce will be honored at halftime of the game after his induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame last month and what Bruce accomplished in the Blue and Gray is not lost on the current crop of Memphis Tigers.

“We just want to go out and play hard for him. We know he means a lot to this program.  Obviously, a Tiger that everybody in the locker room should be striving to be like. A Hall of Famer, that’s the ultimate goal,” said Tigers tight end Sean Dykes.  “For him to come through these South campus buildings to the NFL, to the Hall of Fame, is amazing.  That’s just the blueprint.”

“He’s a legend not only in Memphis but at the next level as well,” said Tigers receiver Calvin Austin.  “Gonna go out and give our best effort and hopefully honor his presentation the right way.”

Bruce will be signing autographs out at Tiger Lane between Noon and 2 on Saturday.