The 1961 edition to the Sugar Bowl featured the 2nd ranked Ole Miss Rebels, and the unranked Rice Owls. After winning the game, Ole Miss won the national championship.
In the first quarter, Rebel quarterback Jake Gibbs scored on an 8-yard touchdown run. In the third quarter, Rice would score on a 2-yard run by Blume, but the extra point missed and Rice was still trailing 7-6. In the fourth quarter, Ole Miss put the game away with a 3-yard touchdown run from Jake Gibbs as Ole Miss won 14-6. Nevertheless, it was a very difficult win for the Rebels against a huge underdog. Rice won the statistical battle, but their quarterback threw 4 interceptions, and the team made some key mistakes.