Since his inaugural year as head coach of HailState U, Dan Mullen has gone 29-22 as head coach, and 2-1 in bowl games. Unfortunately, he’s gone 13-19 in the SEC. Can MSU ever get over the hump? Can the cowbells ever ring loud enough for them to pull through? Texas A&M coming into the west and Ole Miss appearing to be getting back on track… isn’t going to be a good thing for these Bulldogs. In 2012, MSU never managed a win over one team with a winning record (that matters anyway). Yes.. they beat Auburn. Yes they beat Arkansas. Yes they beat Tennessee. But let’s face it… those teams stunk in 2012. MSU won’t have that luxury this year. The Bulldogs will face 7 teams which are bowl eligible in 2013.
Miss. State ended 2012 as 61st in Points For and 34th in Points against nationally.
8/31 Oklahoma St
Miss. State opens up the 2013 with a bang versus a Cowboy team who ranked 3rd nationally in Points For. They averaged 45.7 points a game vs. a MSU team that allowed an average of 23.3 points. One of the Big Battles between the SEC West and the Big12! Yea not really. This is just going to be the start of a long season for MSU. Cowboys by 20.
9/7 Alcorn St
The Bulldogs get a little bit of a breather after getting whooped by the Cowboys. This is a sleepwalker. Bulldogs win by 20.
This is the SEC opener for both teams, and even as bad as the WarEagles were last year.. they somehow managed to keep this one relatively close with the Bulldogs winning 28-10. Auburn will have faced Washington State and Arkansas State by this point on the schedule and the Bulldogs will be the third home game in a row for the Tigers. Will Malzahn have had enough time to get things even somewhat back on track and rolling by this point? I think this may end up being a bit of a slobber knocker of a game. It would be unfair to compare the 2012 Tigers to whatever may be in 2013. Auburn should be improved, but I’m not sure they will have things altogether just yet. Bulldogs by 3.
The Bulldogs return home after what is likely a 2 game win streak to face a team that MSU barely beat last year 30-24 in 2012. This time, the Trojans have to deal with the almighty cowbell… and this likely won’t end well for them. MSU by 10.
9/28 OPEN DATE
After a nice week off to rest and heal up, the Bulldogs will face another set of SEC Tigers, this time with a bit of Cajun flare. Last season, LSU managed a 37-17 win in Baton Rouge with a not so stellar offense. Cam Cameron takes over the reins of the offense and is surely to help Zach Mettenberger improve. LSU will have too much for the Bulldogs.. even if this game is in Starkville. Cajun Kitties by 20.
10/12 Bowling Green
Back in 2001-2002, there were two gentlemen who coached at a little college in Ohio… and turned the program around. Those two gentlemen went on to coach Utah for a few years with great success… and then THE FLORIDA GATORS to two National Championship seasons. Those two men were Urban Meyer and Dan Mullen. Bowling Green’s success since has been a bit up and down, but they did manage to become bowl eligible in 2012 under Dave Clawson a surprising 10th overall in Points against, but only managing 94th nationally in Points For. Unless they have significant improvement in 2013.. that won’t be good enough. HailState should be able to handle BGSU with a win by 14.
10/19 OPEN DATE
What is it about Bulldogs facing some version of a cat or another. After another week off, the bulldogs prepare for another dog and cat fight with Kentucky. Kentucky was a disaster in 2012, fired their coach and hired defensive coordinator Mark Stoops away from Sucks. Kentucky will have already faced a pretty brutal slate of games in Western Kentucky (now coached by some guy named Petrino), Miami (Oh), Louisville, THE FLORIDA GATORS, @South Carolina and Alabama. But they also get a week off before heading to Starkville. Even though Stoops has recruited well, 2013 doesn’t look like it will be much better than their 2012 campaign. I think Kentucky may keep things interesting for a while.. but lack of depth will eventually be their undoing vs. a better MSU. Bulldogs by 10.
11/2 @South Carolina
It’s the Ugly Maroon School Colors Bowl! HailState heads east to face a 2012 Top 10 Gamecocks who have already faced North Carolina, @UGAly, Vandy, @UCF, Kentucky, @Arkansas, @Tennessee and @ Mizzou. South Carolina only allowed an average of 18.2 points per game and put up an average of 31.5 points in 2012. Spurrier has done some good things… but historically.. Spurrier doesn’t exactly have the best of luck with teams from Mississippi. This game might be close for a while.. but in the end… the Gamecocks will be too much… Spurrier too good of a coach. Gamecocks by 17.
11/9 @Texas A&M
After a road trip to face some chickens…. the Bulldogs will head west to face the Aggies of Texas A&M. By this time, TAM will probably have had one loss on the books after facing Rice, Sam Houston St, Alabama, SMU, Arkansas, Ole Miss, Auburn, Vandy, and UTEP. LSU is two weeks away for the Aggies… will they be looking ahead? In 2012, the Aggies showed the Bulldogs who’s boss by handing them a 38-13. This year the Collie will play alpha to the bulldog… Aggies by 17.
Back to back to back maroonish games? That will make for dull HD programming. In 2012, the Crimson Tide drown the Bulldogs 38-7. This year the 2012 National Champions head to Starkville to face all the cowbells… but its really not going to matter. Alabama is just better than MSU in every phase of the game. Every. Phase. This won’t even be close… Tide by 28.
More maroonishness? In 2012, MSU took full advantage of a Arkansas team totally whooped, beaten and had given up. They won’t have that luxury in 2013 as they visit Razorbackland now under the helm of Bret Bielema who knows how to get the best out of what he has to deal with. The Hogs may not be back… but they’ll be good enough by this point in the season to take on a mediocre Bulldog squad. Woo Pig Soooie by 7.
11/28 Ole Miss
From 2008 through 2012, the Bulldogs have a slight advantage lately in the Egg Bowl going 3-2. Things changed with Freeze coming into town to take over the reins at Ole Miss when Ole Miss won 41-24. In Freeze first year, the RebelBlackBearWhateverTheyAreCalledNow’s managed 31.5 points per game and allowed 27.6 points per game. Most teams in their second year under a new head coach show considerable improvement… and this year its possible the OleMissies are going to show the Bulldogs just who the king of the Magnolia State. Ole Miss wins by 17.
Not a good year to be Dan Mullen. Going 4-8 after going to two consecutive bowl games may not settle well in Starkville. Does this put him on the hot seat?