1968 Liberty Bowl

December 14, 1968 - Memphis, Tenn.
Memphis Memorial Stadium - Att: 46,206

MEMPHIS, Tenn. - Virginia Tech's second visit to the Liberty Bowl played out much like its first - the Hokies built an early lead, then saw the game turn on a play in the kicking game. This time it was the University of Mississippi and sophomore quarterback Archie Manning who tamed the Hokies, 34-17, before 46,206 fans, the largest crowd in the 10-year history of the bowl.

For 13 minutes and 11 seconds, it appeared that Tech would blow Ole Miss out of cold, blustery Memorial Stadium. Scoring on a 58-yard run by Ken Edwards on a quick-snap, trick play on the game's second offensive play, Tech shocked the Rebels with its ground attack. The Hokies recovered a fumble on Mississippi's first offensive play and got their second touchdown just three plays later on a 7-yard run by Terry Smoot. Before the quarter was over, Jack Simcsak added a 29-yard field goal for a 17-0 Tech lead.

Eager to capitalize on their momentum, the Hokies attempted an on-side kick following Simcsak's field goal. The ploy took Ole Miss by surprise, but the ball failed to travel the required 10 yards and the Rebels took over at the Tech 49. Manning quickly turned Mississippi's good fortune into a touchdown with a 21-yard scoring pass to end Hank Shows.

Just like that, the momentum of the game turned, and when it did, it turned completely.

What followed was a rash of Tech penalties, fumbles and interceptions that Ole Miss was all too happy to take advantage of.

Eventually, a 79-yard touchdown run by tailback Steve Hindman on the first play of the second half and a 70-yard interception return for a TD by monster man Bob Bailey gave Mississippi the victory. Hindman finished the game with 121 yards on 15 carries and was named the MVP.

Tech continued to battle, making two goal-line stands in the second half. But the Hokies could not overcome their three fumbles, two interceptions and 120 yards in penalties.

Virginia Tech  17  0 0  0 - 17
Mississippi     0 14 7 13 - 34
VT (14:23 re 1st) - Edwards 58 run (Simcsak kick)
VT (12:43 re 1st) - Smoot 7 run (Simcsak kick)
VT (1:49 re 1st) - FG Simcsak 29
UM (14:30 re 2nd) - Shows 21 pass from Manning (Brown kick)
UM (4:28 re 2nd) - Felts 23 pass from Manning (Brown kick) UM (14:41 re 3rd) - Hindman 79 run (Brown kick)
UM (11:54 re 4th) - Bailey 70 interception return (Brown kick)
UM (9:09 re 4th) - FG Brown 46
UM (0:00 re 4th) - FG Brown 26
Team StatisticsUMVT
First Downs714
Passing yds.1412

Individual Leaders
Rushing - VT, Edwards 12-119, Smoot 21-91, Kincaid 15-55, Constantinides 4-45, Humphries 5-8, Tiberio 2-5, Longerbeam 1-7; UM, Hindman 15-121, Bowen 19-65, Felts 1-0, Manning 11-(-1).
Passing - VT, Kincaid 0-4-1-0, Humphries 1-3-1-2; UM, Manning 12-28-1-141.
Receiving - VT, Crigger 1-2; UM, Shows 6-70, Hindman 3-32, Felts 1-23, Bowen 1-8, Franks 1-8.