As soon as Joe Moorhead arrived at Mississippi State, one of his first statements to the players was to figure out their ring sizes.

With a year of reflection, Moorhead said at SEC Media Days that, “I may have elevated the expectation level to where anything we did short of a championship was underachieving.”

With that template, many fans reacted in a way that nothing short of a championship was satisfactory, he said. “That’s on me.”

With a better historical reflection of the program, Moorhead offered this assessment of his first season.

“Doing some of those things early on may not have been fair to the guys,” he said. “I probably should have researched more about the team and what we were capable of doing before talking about ring sizes.”

Moorhead also added that he plans to bring back the “old Mississippi State, blue-collar mentality.”

The Bulldogs return 11 starters, but have plenty of questions on defense where they lost a lot of talent to the NFL.