Oklahoma State vs. Ole Miss

Originally Published: December 11, 2003
By Football Scouts, Inc. | For ESPN Insider

Editor's note: Football Scouts, Inc., breaks down the match-ups in all 28 college bowls games, exclusively for ESPN Insider.

Why to watch
Ole Miss QB Eli Manning is this year's winner of the Maxwell Award given out by the Maxwell Football Club to the nation's top college player adding another chapter to the Manning family's excellence at quarterback. Much like his brother Peyton, Eli appears reserved at times but he appears to have become more of a vocal leader as the year has gone. This will be his last collegiate game and he will have the Rebels' offense fired up coming out of the locker room. Manning wasn't the only member of the Ole Miss squad to walk away with a national award this year, as Jonathan Nichols won the Lou Groza award given to the nation's top kicker. Nichols has been consistent and he has the leg strength to connect on some long-distance field goal attempts. The 1945 Cotton Bowl was Oklahoma State's first bowl appearance ever. The Cowboys are 10-4 in bowl games and they will be making their 11th bowl appearance since 1974. Third-year head coach Les Mile has led Oklahoma State to consecutive bowl appearances for the first time since the 1987 and 1998 seasons.

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