Having opened conference play with a disappointing loss in Lexington, Mississippi State will have to rediscover its loaded backfield. The Wildcats corralled the Bulldogs on the ground, as Nick Fitzgerald, Aeris Williams and Kylin Hill were limited to 44 yards rushing. With Florida around the corner in primetime, fans will be expecting a rebound in Starkville.
It was a bit surprising to see one of the game’s best offensive minds in coach Joe Moorhead have little to no answer against an up and coming Kentucky team. Something was just not clicking and if there’s one thing we’ve learned, it’s that there is definitely room for growth. On the bright side, the talent is there and too much to work with is always better than too little. Though it will take time, expect the Bulldogs to be a run first team and find a way to better utilize the three mentioned above.
While Fitzgerald and Williams are both experienced veterans, Hill, a sophomore phenom, should have gotten more touches. Every team has growing pains when adjusting to a new system. Having said that, Mississippi State will have to figure it out sooner rather than later, as the schedule will only get tougher.
Let’s also keep in mind that it’s still early in the season and it’s just one road loss. If anything, Moorhead and company know what’s ahead. Expect everyone to be ready, comfortable, and in sync at home against the Gators.
If able to get things into place, Mississippi State may just have one of the nation’s most potent backfields. But there is one more lesson that the Bulldogs have learned following what took place at Kroger Field, and that is to focus on the game and not off the field antics. After engaging in a twitter war with Wildcat standout and likely NFL prospect Benny Snell, look for Hill to shift his attention to what matters most.
However, Hill’s 14 yards on just four attempts also had to do with play calling, as fans had no idea why he was not receiving more touches. Moorhead is on his way and the players seem to believe in his system. Now in the midst of SEC play, the Bulldogs know what time it is.
There is a lot of hype and expectations surrounding Mississippi State this season and they know it. The cowbells will be out and the crowd will be rocking come Saturday. Look for a huge bounce back performance from all three and a strong return to form. Hail State!