So with 40 minutes of the Dan Mullen era at Mississippi State in the books, lets take a look at the good, the bad and the ugly of the first half of this historic matchup.The Good
The defense is looking great. They are holding JSU well aside from few plays where it looked like some missed assignments let a receiver slip past the safety. Chris Relf looks more and more like a "Tebow-style" quarterback the more I see him in the game. If he could get some accuracy to go with the strong arm he has, he would be our go-to guy.
The highlight play for me had to be the option-keeper on 4th down to end the half. In previous coaching regimes, we would have taken the 3 points there and gone to the locker room. Relf looked good on the option, and still had the chance to toss out to Robert Elliot.
Chad Bumphis is definitely a play maker at receiver.
The offense has not played all that great. Our success can really be attributed more to the bad special teams play by JSU than anything. Those two missed punt snaps put us in great field position and I am just glad we were able to capitalize on it.
The running game is really missing Anthony Dixon. We are missing his power runs up the middle that can really wear down a defense. Ducree has looked okay, but the 2 fumbles are inexcusable. Since he can't power up the middle like Dixon, the defense knows to expect him to run to the outside. Tyson Lee is holding his own at QB, but it is clear that Relf is more athletic. It will be interesting to see how Mullen mixes those two up as season progresses.
Our kicking game is still terrible. Sean Brauchle seemed to be channeling Adam Carlson on his 2 field goal attempts, missing wide on 2 kicks from around 35 yards out. The kicking game has to get better. That was 6 points we left on the field.
Also, the stupid penalties have hurt us as well. The holding call that erased Ducre's touchdown run was terrible.
On With The Show
The second half just kicked off and Robert Elliot just ran up the middle for a touchdown (how many times have we said that in the past 5 years?), extending the Bulldogs lead to 21-0. Catch you on the flip side.