In his first career start, questions surrounded Mississippi State quarterback Tommy Stevens and the Bulldog offense. Could they move the ball consistently through the air to open up running lanes for running back Kylin Hill? Was Tommy Stevens the right choice over Keytaon Thompson for starting quarterback job? After one game, both of the answers to those questions were a definite yes.
In what was really a sloppy first half, Mississippi State had their opportunities to really blow things open early on the first quarter. Following a touchdown pass from Stevens to Osirus Mitchell, the Bulldog defense forced an interception. 4 plays later, however, they turned the ball over themselves on a strip sack. Mississippi State would force 3 first half turnovers but only convert on one of them. They would also turn the ball over twice due to a special team miscue on a Ragin’ Cajuns punt that touched a Bulldog on the foot, which led to the first Louisiana touchdown of the game. Mississippi State was able to pull away in the second half, opening up a 35-14 lead but their defense would give up 2 touchdowns to make it 35-28 in the fourth quarter making things really uneasy for fans of the maroon and white. Jordan Lawless, who filled in for suspended kicker Jace Christmann, made his first career field goal after missing one in the first half to make things 38-28 and really ice the game.
Generally there will be one player from offense, defense, and special teams to earn a helmet sticker. This week will not be the case because there are two players on offense who get a helmet sticker.
Offense helmet stickers
- Tommy Stevens 20/30, 267 yards, 2 touchdowns. 11 carries, 37 yards, 1 touchdown
- Kylin Hill 27 carries 197 yards, 1 touchdown
Defense helmet sticker
- Cameron Dantzler 7 tackles, 1 interception, 1 fumble recovery
Special teams helmet sticker
- Tucker Day 2 punts, 2 inside the 20, both punts pinned on the 1 yard line
This is really an easy one, the defense was really bad at times yesterday. A bunch of missed tackles, wide open running lanes, and really bit on a lot of Louisiana’s play fakes. The loss of Willie Gay and Lee Autry to suspensions hurt, but it’s hard to believe those two would have made much of a difference in the areas Mississippi State looked bad in. Let’s not throw this defense out to pasture just yet, though. That was an experienced offensive line they faced and three talented running backs that just ran through arm tackles. Much of what State looked bad in can be corrected and coached, the scheme wasn’t an issue.
Mississippi State will host Southern Miss this Saturday at 2:30pm, the game will be on ESPNU. A game preview will be available on Thursday. Be on the lookout for weekly articles that will give updates on Bulldogs in the NFL, which will begin this week.