Mississippi State University took the field this Saturday against the Bowling Green Falcons. The Bulldogs survived a scare from the Falcons, but held on in the end with a score of 21 to 20.
Mississippi State continued their experiment with the two-quarterback system. Tyler Russell got the start and moved the offense all the way down the field, leading the Bulldogs to a quick score. Russell finished the game completing 12 of 14 passes for 102 yards. Dak Prescott ran the football over the Falcons defense all night. Prescott was the team’s leading rusher with 139 yards rushing and two touchdowns. LaDarius Perkins looked healthy for the second straight game; which gave the Bulldogs an extra weapon in the running game. The Bulldogs ran for 245 yards and three touchdowns. Mississippi State wore down the Bowling Green’s defensive front as the game wore on, but did not translate to any points on the scoreboard.
Mississippi State’s defense played uninspired for the majority of the game. Bowling Green struggled to get the offense moving early, but as the game moved on, Bowling Green began to hit their stride. Mississippi State struggled all game to cover the Bowling Green receivers, as Bowling Green quarterback Matt Johnson threw for 224 yards on 20 of 34 passing. The only touchdowns, though, came on the ground. Johnson and Andre Givens scored the only touchdowns of the day for the Falcons.
The Bulldogs left the game open at the end for the Falcons. Mississippi State went for a first on fourth down and came up short. Bowling Green began the drive on the six-yard line. The Falcons drove the field, but turned the ball over on downs with a 1:15 remaining; all but ending the game.
Mississippi State seemed to be in control most of the game, but just could not separate themselves from Bowling Green. Finishing continued to be a problem for the Bulldogs. Mississippi State ended the game 4 for 11 on third down attempts. The Bulldogs went only 66%, 2 for 3, in the red zone. The Bulldog’s offense struggled late in the game again. Mississippi State did not score a point in the entire second half.
Discipline was another problem for Mississippi State; the Bulldogs had nine penalties for 71 yards. The amount of penalties really hurt the Bulldogs as they tried to put distance between the two teams.
Mississippi State will need to correct these issues when before they take on Kentucky on October 24th.