In Dan Mullen's tenure at Mississippi State, perhaps no place has brought on heartache more than Jordan-Hare Stadium, the home of the Auburn Tigers. During Mullen's tenure, the Bulldogs have lost once on The Plains when Auburn managed to stop Chris Relf just short of the goal line. Another time, Mississippi State seemed to be in control of the game, only to fall to Auburn with seconds on the clock, just one of the Tigers' amazing victories on their way to the SEC Championship and a berth in the National Championship Game.
Let's not even talk about Cam Newton. At least that game did not happen at Auburn as well.
What we can talk about is the exciting matchup waiting for fans early in the season when Mississippi State travels to Auburn. The Tigers and Bulldogs matched up last year in Starkville when No. 3 Mississippi State knocked off the No. 2 Auburn to take over the top spot in the polls. Without a doubt, Auburn fans have not forgotten that game, and one would think that returning players for the Tigers remember the game as well. That fact, combined with knowing that it is not out of the realm of possibility that the contest could again feature two top-ten or top-fifteen teams sets up for this contest to be one of the most anticipated for the Bulldogs.
While Mississippi State could not be faulted for a loss at Auburn should the Tigers be playing to expectations, a win by the Bulldogs would do much to try to make the 2015 season match the 2014 season. Should Mississippi State enter the game undefeated and leave undefeated, it sets up for an amazing November for Bulldog fans. However, a loss by Mississippi State, especially if it follows a loss to LSU two weeks prior, will take the wind out of the season for Bulldog fans.
Even looking at the game from outside maroon-tented lenses, the game offers excitement as it offers another glimpse as to whom Auburn will be in 2015. Will Jeremy Johnson be as good as advertised before the season starts. Will the Auburn defense improve quickly under Will Muschamp in his return to Auburn. The Tigers will have played a neutral site game against Louisville and a road match against LSU. Both should test those parts of this Auburn squad, and they should be ready to go when the Tigers face Mississippi State.
One group that will be ready to go will be the Auburn faithful. While it will not be the first Auburn home game of the season as the Tigers open at home in week two against Jacksonville State, it will be the SEC home opener for Auburn, which should lead to a charged atmosphere.
In the SEC, nearly every game feels like a tough one, and nearly every game feels like a must win. Mississippi State will face both scenarios at Auburn.