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Mississippi State X-factor Analysis: LSU

A look into the performance of the Bulldogs’ X-factors in a loss to the Tigers

NCAA Football: Mississippi State at Louisiana State Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

What about last night? Let’s call it what it was, a painful loss in Baton Rouge. That said, a heroic effort is usually required when facing LSU at home, especially at night. Though they were held to just three points, Mississippi State’s defense did show some flashes, as LSU only scored 19.

Defensive x-factor Montez Sweat shined in the losing effort with seven total tackles, one for loss, and a sack. He got to Tiger quarterback Joe Burrow and left it all on the field. Having shown his ability as a true edge rusher, Sweat has embraced his role and is sure to post even higher stats going forward.

Massachusetts v Mississippi State Photo by Butch Dill/Getty Images

But it was not enough, as home field advantage plays a role. Tiger stadium is something else at night, ultimately intimidating the opponent to a point where the energy becomes too much. That did not slow Sweat’s production, however, as Mississippi State will rely on him heavily going forward.

Contrary to Sweat, it was an uphill battle from the start for Bulldog signal caller Nick Fitzgerald. It is virtually impossible to come back from two interceptions in Tiger Stadium under the lights. While Fitzgerald’s ability as a dual threat is unrivaled, LSU was able to key in on him.

NCAA Football: Mississippi State at Louisiana State Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

Fitzgerald passed for just 59 yards with four interceptions. Though he rushed for 131, the Tigers contained Fitzgerald in the open field. Look for him to bounce back, as Mississippi State heads home to take on the Aggies of Texas A&M.

On the bright side, fans got to see one of nation’s best defenses in primetime. The sore could have looked a lot worse. On offense, the Bulldogs must find a way next week. Coach Joe Moorhead should have something in store, as Mississippi State is a different beast at Davis Wade.