Whenever a team stages an upset of a top-ten team on the road in an environment as hostile as Death Valley, more than just one player had a big night, and that is exactly how the Mississippi State Bulldogs defeated the LSU Tigers 34-29 Saturday night in Bation Rouge.
Below are five candidates up for Mississippi State's player of the game, but instead of us deciding, the readers will get to pick who walks away with this award. Campaign in the comments! Voting closes at 9 pm CT. We'll post the results on Monday.
1) Dak Prescott: When coming up with a list of contenders for player of the game, Prescott has to be on the list. All summer long, folks in the media hyped up Prescott, and quite a few reacted negatively to that hype. Saturday night, the junior quarterback showed he has the skill and fortitude to be a top level quarterback.
On the stat sheet, Prescott looked like this: 22 carries for 118 yard and a touchdown, and 15 of 24 for 268 yards and 2 TDs.
2) Josh Robinson: Another player from Louisiana who made big plays Saturday night, Robinson's biggest play was not reflected in the stat sheet. Running backs cannot get credit for a pass broken up, but late in the second quarter, Prescott made an ill-advised, shovel-like pass that Robinson batted away from a defender. Had he not made that play, the Tigers had a pick-six, and would have stolen the momentum in the game right before halftime and only had faced a 17-10 deficit.
On the stat sheet, Robinson looked like this: 16 carries for 197 yards and a touchdown. Of note, he never lost a yard on a carry Saturday night.
3) Jameon Lewis: The senior wide receiver had been quite at time during the 2014 season, but he made himself known against LSU by using his speed for a long touchdown reception and to help move the chains at different times in the game.
On the stat sheet, Lewis looked like this: 5 catches for 116 yards and a touchdown
4) De'Runnya Wilson: Bear looked like all of the pieces are coming together in his progression Saturday night. The sophomore receiver took advantage of his size to create space to catch the ball, and he seemed to haul in everything going his way. Much like Robinson, he had a big play that does not show up on the stat sheet when he made the final downfield block on a Dak Prescott touchdown.
On the stat sheet, Wilson looked like this: 4 catches for 91 yards and a touchdown
5) Preston Smith: The Mississippi State Bulldogs shut down the LSU running game, and they harassed Anthony Jennings throughout the night to stifle the Tigers. Smith, who has been the SEC Defensive Lineman of the week for the first three weeks of the season, had another solid game, and he might have done enough to win the award for a fourth-consecutive time.
On the State sheet, Smith looked like this: Five tackles, one sack, two tackles for loss