Mississippi State senior wide receivers Arceto Clark (19) and Chad Bumphis (1) celebrate Clark's touchdown catch against Northwestern during Tuesday's Gator Bowl. (Photo by Stephen Morton, AP)
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. â€“ Taking with them a 29-22 record, the 2012 Mississippi State senior class finished as the winningest senior class in over a decade.
â€śWe didnâ€™t finish this thing out like we wanted to, but those seniors had a good run here at Mississippi State," Bulldogs running back LaDarius Perkins said. "Those were some great seniors that we had.â€ť
Posting 29 victories, the senior class also became only the fourth senior class to win 29 games since the end of World War II.
Place those seniors with the rest of the team and the impressive statistics continue to stack up.
The offense finished the 2012 season breaking four single-season passing school-records. Included in those records were the most passing yards at 3,091, the highest pass completion percentage (.587) and the most passing touchdowns with 28.
The MSU offense also moved to second on the all-time single-season pass attempt chart as the 2012 team attempted 424 passes.
Not to be outdone the 2012 defense became the fourth in State history to record 19 interceptions in a single season.
The Bulldogs scored 383 points in 2012 to mark a new school record, surpassing the 377 points scored in 2010.
The 2012 team also broke the single-season record for overall touchdowns with 49, while the group tied the single-season record for touchdowns scored rushing and passing (46).
While breaking a 14-year old school record set by Brian Hazelwood for points scored by a kicker with 85, freshman Devon Bell became the third true freshman in school history to lead MSU in scoring.
Bellâ€™s 47-yard field goal in the third quarter tied his career long set at LSU on Nov. 10.
Clarkâ€™s TD catch
breaks bowl record
Senior Arceto Clark recorded his only touchdown of the 2012 season during the second quarter. The wide receiver became the only player in school history with a touchdown in three different bowl games.
With the score, Clark also became the only MSU non-quarterback with three career touchdowns in bowl games.
Whitley intercepts way
into the record books
Junior Nickoe Whitley picked off both Northwestern quarterbacks to tie Derek Peguesâ€™ bowl game interception record set in the 2007 Liberty Bowl.
Whitley now has 10 interceptions for his career.
Cameron Lawrence proved why he is an All-Southeastern Conference linebacker.
Finishing the 2012 season with 120 tackles, Lawrence became the first Bulldog since James Williams in 1988-89 to record back-to-back 120-plus tackle seasons.
Russell breaks records
during the season
Tyler Russellâ€™s first year as a starter in 2012 saw the junior tie Tommy Pharr (1967-1969) for career completions with 339.
Posting 26 touchdowns, Russell broke a 60-year old single-season record for touchdowns and enters his senior year tied for fifth all-time in the same category.
Russell finished the season with 11 school records broken or tied, including those for attempts, completions, completion percentage, yards, touchdowns, attempts without an interception, 200-yard passing games, attempt-interception ratio, total offense touchdowns responsible for and passing efficiency.
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