Mike Leach's first Mississippi State football team to play Tulsa in Armed Forces Bowl

Tyler Horka
Mississippi Clarion Ledger

STARKVILLE – The Bulldogs are packing their bags for the holidays.

Mississippi State football will play in a program-record 11th straight bowl game. The Bulldogs (3-7) were selected to play No. 25 Tulsa (6-2) in the Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl on Dec. 31.

Mississippi State officially announced the bowl bid via Twitter on Sunday afternoon. 

The game will be played at Amon G. Carter Stadium in Fort Worth, Texas at 11 a.m. CT. It will be televised on ESPN. 

Mississippi State's three wins are the fewest the Bulldogs have posted since 2006. However, the unusual circumstances of the 2020 season have allowed MSU to continue its bowl game streak, as every team was bowl eligible. 

Tulsa's only two losses came against ranked teams. The Golden Hurricane started the year with a 16-7 loss to then-No. 11 Oklahoma State and ended the year with a 27-24 loss to No. 9 Cincinnati. 

Tulsa picked up victories over ranked teams against then-No. 11 UCF (34-26) and then-No. 18 SMU (28-24). The Golden Hurricane nearly won the American Athletic Conference Championship Game on Saturday, but Cincinnati nailed a field goal as time expired. 

This is Tulsa's first bowl bid since 2016 when the Golden Hurricane beat Central Michigan 55-10 in the Miami Beach Bowl, which is now the Frisco Bowl. Tulsa is 10-11 all-time in bowl games. 

The Bulldogs are 6-4 in their last 10 bowl game appearances. They've lost their last two. Former coach Joe Moorhead was in charge for both of those defeats. First-year coach Mike Leach will get his first crack at winning a bowl game in maroon and white this time around. 

Dec 19, 2020; Starkville, Mississippi, USA; Mississippi State Bulldogs quarterback Will Rogers (2) makes a pass against the Missouri Tigers during the first quarter at Davis Wade Stadium at Scott Field.

Leach has a 7-8 record in bowl games. He went 5-4 while at Texas Tech and 2-4 while at Washington State. Mississippi State has a 13-10 all-time record in postseason play. 

The Bulldogs enter this year's postseason off a convincing victory over Missouri. MSU beat Mizzou 51-32 on Saturday at Davis Wade Stadium. 

Mississippi State forced three defensive turnovers, scored a defensive touchdown, scored on special teams and generated 446 offensive yards in the victory.

Contact Tyler Horka at thorka@gannett.com. Follow @tbhorka on Twitter. To read more of Tyler's work, subscribe to the Clarion Ledger today!