Egg Bowl Eve: Oxford prepares for Magnolia state's biggest rival - WLBT.com - Jackson, MS

Egg Bowl Eve: Oxford prepares for Magnolia state's biggest rivalry

OXFORD, MS (WLBT) -

Things were pretty quiet in the Grove on Friday night...but it's Egg Bowl Eve. That means things are just ramping up for the state's biggest rivalry game.

You could call it the calm before the storm. 

Fans were allowed into the Grove at 9 on Friday morning for tent set up---instead of the usual 8 pm. That made a major difference for tent companies.

Bryan Arntson of Louis Carr Company says "At night we have to run in with tents and competition with everybody else. But today we just walked in here nice and calmly."

The other activity going on in Oxford is connected to SEC Nation. They'll be broadcasting live from the Grove stage. 

By then, the trash talking will be well under way. 

Dustin Bagwell and his family say that they know what's at stake.

Bagwell, a member of the Ole Miss Class of '97 says, "To be able to wear your colors and to have the upper hand for 364 more days regardless of the outcome of the other team's season, you at least have the upper hand for a year."

Even with a mostly empty Grove, the nerves are present.

"Butterflies are high for me," says Bagwell. "When you begin to see the other school's fans come in and invade our territory, that's when the energy hits it's peak."

Near campus on the Square, one of those Mississippi State fans isn't ashamed to show his true colors.

"Ole Miss is dog meat," says David Dorsey, an avid Bulldog fan.

Dorsey thinks the national exposure has only added fuel to the fire for this rivalry.

"Ole Miss is playing to keep us from going to the national championship," Dorsey says. "We're trying our best to go to the national championship."

The excitement translates to extra business for spots like Neilson's Department Store.

Lane Wilson, Neilson's Department Store General Manager says, "It is a huge amount of preparation that goes in."

She says that Black Friday plus the Egg Bowl crowd keeps them on their toes.

"Typically we man the store, full capacity," Wilson says. "This instance, we're trying to get loaded up for Black Friday and Egg Bowl. So, inventory control is kinda the buzzword."

And RIVALRY is the buzzword all across the Magnolia state-especially in Oxford on Friday night.

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