The Mississippi State Bulldogs are almost a mere two weeks away from opening up on Thursday night.
Here are three hot issues they need to get worked out in Fall camp:
1. Believe As A Team They Have A Shot
The Bulldogs return a ton of experience in Starkville in 2011. Quarterback Chris Relf, running back Vick Ballard and LaDarius Perkins and wide receiver Chad Bumphis all return to give this offense a very formidable punch. Defensively Fletcher Cox and Josh Boyd return along the defensive line. Dan Mullen believes he can win with this team right now. The players have to believe among themselves they can as well.
2. Rekindle The Passing Offense
Chris Relf really progressed as the year went on in 2010. By the end of the year, Relf ripped the Michigan defense through the air in the Gator Bowl. Relf threw for over 280 yards and three touchdowns against the depleted Wolverines. He has this type of game. Maybe it’s not Aaron Murray standing back there in the pocket, but with Relf’s ability to run the ball, along with the spread offense that is so dependent on the run, it will open up passing opportunities. Mullen has to get Relf to believe he can throw for 250 yards per game.
3. Get Linebackers Figured Out
The Bulldogs lost experience from a year ago at linebacker. Both Chris White and KJ Wright were very good for this defense. Their leadership and athletic ability will be sorely missed. The Bulldogs need to develop depth during Fall camp most importantly at the linebacker position. The defensive line and defensive backfield will be fine, but I am most worried about the second level – i.e. the linebackers.