Mississippi State improved to 2-0 on the season Saturday by winning in the team’s home opener but the win may have come at a heavy cost.

Joe Moorhead’s squad beat the Eagles 38-15 on Saturday but the biggest news from Starkville on Saturday was the injury to starting quarterback Tommy Stevens. The senior left the game in the second quarter, walking back to the locker room on his own power, and did not return to the game after being evaluated by the team’s training staff.

Fiery Sweet Wing Sauce
Aged cayenne peppers bring the heat, while molasses and honey inject the sweet into our Fiery Sweet Wing Sauce. For a dash of daring deliciousness, give it a shot.

Stevens did come out in the second half but was without pads or a helmet while rooting on his teammates from the sideline.

The injury news wasn’t all bad for Mississippi State, however, as star running back Kylin Hill also went down in the second quarter but returned to the field and looked as good as ever against Southern Miss in the second half.

Hill finished with 123 yards and a touchdown in the game; he now has 320 rushing yards for the season — which currently leads the SEC. Senior Nick Gibson added another rushing touchdown during the period when Hill was being evaluated by the MSU training staff. Quinndary Witherspoon also scored a rushing touchdown, the first of his college career.

Here is a look at Hill’s most impressive run of the day, as he broke several tackles on his way to a 22-yard rush in the second quarter.

With Stevens out, true freshman signal-caller Garret Shrader took the field for the Bulldogs. Shrader had a solid debut, going completing 6 of 10 passes for 66 yards in the game. While Keytaon Thompson is back with the team, after exploring his options in the NCAA transfer portal, he was not eligible to play on Saturday.

Bob Shoop’s defense had a nice bounce-back performance on the day following an inconsistent debut last weekend against Louisiana. Mississippi State held Southern Miss to just 110 rushing yards on the day and two of nine on third downs.

The defense also forced three turnovers via a fumble recovery and two interceptions and finished the day with two sacks and six tackles for loss. Kicker Jace Christmann made a 30-yard field goal but missed a 43-yard attempt in the fourth quarter.

Before leaving the game due to injury, Stevens started the game 8 of 8 passing and finished completing 9 of 10 attempts for 105 yards and two touchdowns — Stephen Guidry and Osius Mitchell each caught one touchdown pass from Stevens.

In total, 10 Mississippi State receivers caught a pass in this game.

Mississippi State is set to host Kansas State in Davis-Wade Stadium next Saturday looking to improve to 3-0 on the season.