STARKVILLE, Miss. — Head football coach Joe Moorhead held his weekly press conference to recap last weekend’s 38-7 loss to Alabama and preview this week’s homecoming game against Abilene Christian.
Moorhead opened up the press conference by talking about former Mississippi State players.
Former defensive tackle Jeffery Simmons and offensive lineman Elgton Jenkins were at Davis Wade Stadium to watch Mississippi State. Moorhead said it was great for everyone to see Simmons and Jenkins on the sideline supporting the Bulldogs.
“It was great to have Elgton Jenkins and Jeffery Simmons back to join us for a game,” Moorhead said. “They lead us out on the Dawg Walk. To have two players of their caliber, both guys who did an awesome job at Mississippi State, be back around the program, I think was great for everyone to see,” he said.
He also mentioned that it was great to see Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott throw for 444 passing yards against the Detroit Lions Sunday.
As for this week, Moorhead isn't overlooking FCS opponent Abilene Christian.
“Having been part of that and playing against an FBS program, the kids look at with a chip on their shoulder and a chance to compete against players at the highest level,” Moorhead said. “I know they’re going to be fired up, I know they’re going to be excited,” he said.
“I think it goes back to our 1-0 mindset and mentality. Regardless of the opponent, we are here competing against a standard and with a process rather than focusing on who you are playing. That was something we emphasized to the kids yesterday,” Moorhead said. “Regardless of who you are playing, opponent one or opponent 12, FCS or FBS, we are going to approach it the same way. The process will determine the product on Saturday,” he said.
”We need to get that back clicking,” Moorhead said. “Kind of get Osirus [Mitchell] going, Deddrick [Thomas], Stephen [Guidry]. Get the quarterbacks back confident. I think this is a good opportunity run game and pass wise to work on some of those things in a game setting and get back to being effective heading into the last week of the regular season,” he said.
The Bulldogs need to win the next two games to make a bowl game. Moorhead said he doesn’t want to think too much about Ole Miss yet, but everyone knows what’s at stake.
“We need to be focused on the task at hand. Certainly, everyone knows what is looming on the back end of this: a huge game, a huge rivalry game,” Moorhead said. “Our focus will turn to that the second the clock ticks zero against Abilene Christian. Right now, all of the focus and attention of the players and staff are on doing what is necessary to get win No. 5 and beat Abilene Christian. When the clock hits zero, it will be full speed ahead to the last game,” he said.
However, Moorhead outlined exactly what will happen in preparation for the Ole Miss game.
”There won’t be much rest or sleep on Saturday,” Moorhead said. “The game will end at 9:30 or 10. I want the coaches to spend a little bit of time grading the tape so the kids have it available to them on Sunday. But the game will end, we’ll go home, take a nap, come in first thing in the morning and talk a little bit about Abilene Christian, have the grade sheets ready for the kids to watch. Then we’ll immediately go into game-planning for Ole Miss throughout the day.”