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Mississippi State Offense Struggles in Loss to No. 11 Texas A&M

MSU falls to 1-3.

NCAA Football: Texas A&M at Mississippi State Matt Bush-USA TODAY Sports

STARKVILLE, Miss. — Mississippi State was handed a 28-14 loss by the No. 11 Texas A&M Aggies Saturday evening inside Davis Wade Stadium.

With the loss, the Bulldogs fall to 1-3, while the Aggies improve to 3-1.

The Mississippi State offense continues to struggle, mustering just 217 yards of total offense, including 219 through the air and minus-2 on the ground.

Senior quarterback K.J. Costello completed 15 of 22 passes for 99 yards and an interception. Freshman quarterback Will Rogers, who replaced Costello midway through the third quarter, finished 15 of 18 for 120 yards and a touchdown.

The running game continues to be nonexistent for the Bulldogs. Freshman running back Jo’quavious Marks had seven carries for 25 yards. Marks led the team in receiving, too, as he made nine catches for 40 yards. Junior wide receiver Malik Heath hauled in five catches for 57 yards and a touchdown.

The Mississippi State defense held Texas A&M to 325 yards of total offense, including just 139 yards through the air from senior quarterback Kellen Mond. He tossed two touchdowns and an interception in the game.

Senior linebacker Erroll Thompson led the defense with 11 tackles, while sophomore cornerback Martin Emerson finished with nine.

Texas A&M sophomore running back Isaiah Spiller led the Aggies with 18 carries for 114 yards rushing and two touchdowns. Freshman wide receiver Chase Lane was Texas A&M’s leading receiver as he finished with 70 yards receiving and a touchdown on five caches.

For the fourth straight game, senior linebacker Buddy Johnson led the Aggies in tackles as he finished with 12. He also recorded two pass breakups and a sack.

The game was scoreless after one quarter of play, but that quickly changed when the Aggies capped off an eight-play, 66-yard drive that began in the first quarter with a 3-yard touchdown run from Spiller to make it 7-0 with 14:57 left in the second quarter.

On the ensuing drive, the Bulldogs were forced to punt on their own 22-yard line. Texas A&M sophomore linebacker Chris Russell Jr. wound up blocking the punt and the Aggies took over at the 1-yard line. Spiller punched it in to make it 14-0 with 13:27 left in the half.

The teams went into the halftime break with the Aggies leading 14-0.

The Bulldogs got on the board when sophomore safety Collin Duncan defended a pass and the ball ricocheted into the hands of freshman cornerback Emmanuel Forbes. Forbes returned it 60 yards for a touchdown to make it 14-7 with 11:38 left in the third quarter.

The Aggies extended their lead when Mond found Lane for a 51-yard touchdown connection to make it 21-7 with 10:05 left in the third quarter. Mond then connected with sophomore running back Ainias Smith for a 6-yard touchdown pass to make it 28-7 with 8:39 left in the third quarter.

Rogers capped off a 13-play, 89-yard drive with a 32-yard touchdown pass to Heath to make it 28-14 with 11:11 left in the game to end the game’s scoring.

The Bulldogs will now have an open week before traveling to Alabama to face the No. 2 Crimson Tide at Bryant-Denny Stadium on Halloween.