What Dan Mullen said after Mississippi State got whipped by Auburn
Published 6:59 am Sunday, October 1, 2017
Mississippi State had high hopes two weeks ago after thrashing LSU at home but it has been tough going since. Saturday, Auburn gave MSU all it could handle, beating State 49-10.
Here’s what Bulldog head coach Dan Mullen had to say after the game:
On the lack of competitiveness…
“If I would’ve known that we had close to the same rushing yards as them at the beginning of the fourth quarter, I would’ve said it was a three-point game and we’re going to try to win it at the end. The big plays really hurt today on the defensive side of the ball.
“There were some missed opportunities on the offensive side. Last week I don’t think we played well. I’m anxious to see the film this week to see if we played better than last week, but just missed some plays. If that’s the case then we’ll take a look and try to get that fixed. If we played worse than that’ll just be disappointing that we didn’t get better.”
On the younger guys…
“With two starters out, it gives the younger guys some opportunities to make some plays. We do have to play better and make plays. The opportunities are there, we just have to make plays.”
It was a Top-25 matchup on the Plains Saturday night, No. 24 Mississippi State (3-2, 1-2 SEC) fell to No. 13 Auburn (4-1, 2-0) by a final score of 49-10. A 59-yard rush by Tiger tailback Kerryon Johnson on AU’s first possession set the tone for a night in which the Auburn offense did most of its damage on big plays and took an early lead that the Bulldogs were never able to claw back from.
Auburn initially jumped out to a 21-3 lead, MSU’s lone early points coming from a Jace Christmann field goal after sophomore defensive tackle Jeffery Simmons forced a fumble by AU quarterback Jarrett Stidham that was recovered by junior linebacker Montez Sweat. The Bulldogs got into the end zone later in the first half when sophomore quarterback Nick Fitzgerald rolled out and threw across his body to an open Justin Johnson for a six-yard score.
Fitzgerald finished the game 13-of-33 passing for 157 yards, two interceptions and one touchdown, and he was also the team’s leading rusher, rushing 13 times for 56 yards. With 60 yards on two catches, sophomore Jamal Couch was MSU’s leading receiver.
The Bulldogs will be off next Saturday before returning home Oct. 14 to begin a two-game homestand. On that date, State will entertain BYU with kickoff time expected to be announced this Monday, Oct. 2. MSU will follow that contest by hosting SEC foe Kentucky for Homecoming on Oct. 21.