Mississippi State dropped a tough game at Memphis last Saturday and now will return home to open SEC play this weekend against LSU.

The game will mark the first of what will be a number of tough league contests remaining on the Bulldogs’ 2021 schedule.

But when you play in the SEC West, that’s to be expected, and Mississippi State coach Mike Leach knows it.

“Everybody’s good,” Leach said Wednesday during the SEC coaches teleconference. “Everybody can get everybody on any week. It’s a lot like the Big 12 South when I was there. … The SEC West is the toughest division, without question, right now.”

Leach was also asked Wednesday about what he’s seen from LSU so far compared to past seasons, and the Mississippi State coach had high praise for the Tigers.

“I think they look quite similar,” Leach said. “They’re big and fast and explosive. … I think they look pretty good in all phases.”

With this being the first conference game for the Bulldogs, Leach was asked if a different energy was required from his players in practice in preparation.

“It shouldn’t. If you’re fully invested in what you’re doing to begin with, it should be quite similar,” Leach said. “I know everyone is excited to play this week.”