Josh Kendall

November 1, 2013

Kendall's Morning Meeting: Nothing about the Bulldogs will spook you

Mississippi State doesn't have a go-to facet of the game, and that will be a problem against a South Carolina team that plays well at home.

Josh Kendall

News and views about Gamecocks football

    Mississippi State is third in the SEC in turnover margin. The Bulldogs have acquired turnovers four more times than they’ve committed them.
    Still, Mississippi State is 4-3 and without a win on which it can hang its hat. The Bulldogs have beaten Alcorn State, Troy, Bowling Green (by one) and Kentucky this season. Their losses have come to decent-to-good teams in Oklahoma State, LSU and Auburn. So it’s hard to judge from that perspective exactly what kind of team is coming into Williams-Brice Stadium.
    That turnover margin, though, provides a clue. Usually teams who get more turnovers get more wins. Missouri and Alabama lead the SEC in turnover margin and lead their divisions. For the Bulldogs to be as high as they are in that category and to not have done more with it is a red flag.

    The Bulldogs are fair-to-poor in most other major statistical categories. They are 10th in the SEC in scoring (30.1 ppg), sixth in points allowed (22.9 ppg), seventh in rushing (205.4 ypg), ninth in passing (250.6 ypg), etc., etc.

    South Carolina, meanwhile, has struggled at times this season. But those times haven’t come at home. After three straight road games, the Gamecocks come back to Williams-Brice Stadium looking for their 15th straight home win. South Carolina will get it easily. Gamecocks 41, Bulldogs 20.
    Around the SEC:

    Mississippi State is preparing to face Jadeveon Clowney and preparing for Clowney to make some plays.
    “The one mistake I think you can make is go into a game and expecting, ‘Hey, we’re going to take him out of the game,’ ” Bulldogs coach Dan Mullen said. “He’s going to find a way to make his plays. What we have to do is do a good job of making sure we limit the amount of plays he can make.”

    Is Todd Gurley’s return enough to pull Georgia back from the brink? The Bulldogs are hoping so.

    “He just adds so much to the offense and the run game, obviously,” Georgia quarterback Aaron Murray said. “It allows us to do more in the playbook. And he just brings an excitement to the team. Making plays, running guys over, stiff-arming guys, that just pumps the guys up, pumps the offense up, pumps the defense up, pumps up everybody. It gets everybody amped up and into the game.”

    A writer with spent Saturday with SEC commissioner Mike Slive and wrote  long profile of Slive. Part of their day was spent in Columbia, Mo., where Slive took in South Carolina’s big comeback win over Missouri.


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