The Matchup: Jackson State at Mississippi State
When: Saturday, September 1st
Where: Starkville, Mississippi
Game Time: 7:00 PM ET
TV: ESPN GamePlan
Year four of the Dan Mullen era is set to kickoff this Saturday as the Bulldogs host the Jackson State Tigers at 6 p.m. in Davis Wade Stadium – Scott Field and for most fans this is the start of a very anticipated season. One many people expect big things from in the 2012 version of the Mississippi State Bulldog football team. Many people will storm Starkville and the Junction to tailgate, meet up with friends and enjoy a great opening weekend of college football – and of course expect the Bulldogs to have no issues with their SWAC counterparts from Jackson.
Obviously if you ask Dan Mullen though he is in coach mode (level ten thousand) when asked about Jackson State. “A very successful program, a team that, watching them and looking at their team at this point, I’d be shocked if they don’t win the SWAC championship this year,” Mullen said.
Obviously you expect Mullen or any coach to say this about any FCS team for nothing more than to show respect. Surely your program will not have any problems beating an FCS team and doing it handily. Actually if Jackson State offers Mississippi State any trouble I may actually just burn the rest of my tickets for the season, but I digress.
The Bulldogs will work to do a few things verses the Tigers. One is unveil their newly transformed “spread” attack from a power running game to more of a pass happy game. The Bulldogs will look to get many receivers in the mix early and often and get starting quarterback Tyler Russell back on the sideline as quickly as possible.
Mullen would like nothing more than to put this one away quickly and give way to back up quarterback Dak Prescott. The redshirt freshman has never taken a college snap and Mullen has next to no depth or proven depth behind Russell. Getting Prescott plenty of snaps would make all that wear maroon and white a little more comfortable.
Secondly – play as many youngsters as you can. There are several sophomores and redshirt freshmen that need snaps in a live college football game and I think you will see this Saturday.
Finally, stay healthy. The last thing you need is several players getting injured or banged up in a game that is really nothing more than a glorified scrimmage. You want to protect your house and your players this week.
Protecting your players, getting playing time to necessary backups, building chemistry along the offensive line and a big win are all priorities for the Bulldogs in the season opener on Saturday.
To put it lightly – take care of business with this bunch of Tigers because the ones that are coming next week (Auburn) bite just a little harder than their Jackson State counter parts.
About the Author
Written by Jake Wimberly
Mississippi State alum, co-founder of makeitrainsports, co-host to makeitrainsports radio on Rebel sports radio and Bulldog sports radio all on the Vsporto Network. Lover of SEC Sports, fitness and married to my best friend. Enjoy ketchup in large amounts and in search for a flying unicorn.