Top 11 Highlights of the 2011 Football Season
No. 1 - 12 Victories
Feb. 1, 2012
Top Moments Central Page
The 2011 Southern Miss football season was a season for the record books including the most wins in school history, a Conference USA championship, and ending with a Sheraton Hawai'i Bowl victory.
SouthernMiss.com will be showcasing the top 11 highlights of the 2011 football season over the next four weeks with the #1 highlight being released on Wednesday, February 1st, national signing day.
Heading into the 2011 Southern Miss football season, the Golden Eagles accomplished double digit victories twice over their first 99 years of existence.
The program had won then school-record 10 games in both the 1952 and 1988 seasons until that number was shattered this past season with 12 victories.
What a great ring that has to it. Only seven Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) teams registered that many wins during the campaign. Houston, which the Golden Eagles beat for the C-USA championship, and LSU, led the nation with 13 victories. The Golden Eagles were joined by Oklahoma State, Oregon, Boise State and national champion Alabama with 12. That was pretty select company for a program that has enjoyed much success in its history.
The Golden Eagles achieved this feat by thriving in all three phases of the game.
On offense, the squad registered a school-record for total yards with 6,459 yards, marking the fourth time in the last five years the Golden Eagles have eclipsed a school mark in that category. That final tally put the Golden Eagles over the 6,000-yard total offensive yard mark for the first time in their history.
The defense held its opponents to seven or fewer points three times during the campaign and went on to register an FBS-record of eight interceptions for touchdowns to highlight that group's accomplishments during the year.
As for special teams, the Golden Eagles blocked three punts and one field goal that they converted for touchdowns and junior return specialist Tracey Lampley made solid play after solid play, including one punt return for a score to highlight that group.
Southern Miss averaged 36.9 points per game during the year, which ranked No. 14 in the FBS, while holding opponents to 20.8 points per contest. The scoring defense ranked No. 26 in the FBS.
Now that the doors have closed on arguably the best season in school history, the anticipation of what's ahead for this Golden Eagle program under first-year coach Ellis Johnson is exciting to think about and a journey begins as we look forward to taking Southern Miss football to new heights.