AP All-Bowl Team Taps Mississippi State’s Forbes for Armed Forces Bowl Performance

Published 7:00 am Saturday, January 9, 2021

STARKVILLE – When his team needed a big play, Mississippi State football’s Emmanuel Forbes came up with a season-defining play against Tulsa in the Armed Forces Bowl, and for his efforts garnered a spot on the Associated Press All-Bowl team, as announced Thursday (January 7).

Forbes adds his fourth postseason honor of the year after appearing in all 11 games with nine starts at cornerback. Along with the all-bowl accolades, he was a Freshman All-SEC selection by the conference coaches, a True Freshman All-American by 247Sports and an All-SEC second team choice by Phil Steele.

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The rookie took three of his five interceptions back for scores, totaling an FBS-best 183 interception return yards, which set an MSU single-season standard, previously held byJohnthan Banks (145; 2009). His three interception returns for touchdowns are the most by an MSU student-athlete in a single season and are tied for the career record at MSU with Banks (3; 2009-12), Corey Broomfield (3; 2009-12) and Derek Pegues (3; 2005-08).

Against Tulsa in the Armed Forces Bowl, Forbes returned a third-quarter pick 90 yards for a score, marking the longest interception return in the bowl’s history and tying for the sixth-longest return in MSU history, equaling Anthony Derricks’ 90-yard return against Auburn in 1997.

The Grenada, Mississippi, native finished the regular season ranked No. 8 among FBS true freshmen cornerbacks in coverage grade (71.6) and tied for No. 3 nationally in interceptions (5). His five interceptions were the most in the SEC, led all FBS true freshmen and are the most by a Bulldog since Mark McLaurin grabbed six during the 2017 campaign.

For the season, Forbes finished with 44 tackles, five interceptions, six pass breakups and 0.5 tackles for loss. He piled up a season-best eight stops against Auburn and totaled seven tackles versus Missouri to close out the SEC schedule. His 701 defensive snaps played rank No. 4 nationally among true freshmen defenders and No. 2 by a rookie in the SEC.