Rapid Reaction: Mississippi State handles Texas A&M 35-14
What a performance by Mississippi State on Saturday night.
Most people probably didn’t expect the Bulldogs to roll the way they did in College Station, as they hammered Texas A&M 35-14.
Dan Mullen’s squad improved its season record to 6-2 (3-2 SEC), and it did so with relative ease.
Here are a few takeaways from the game:
Todd Grantham’s defense is legit.
Mississippi State’s defenders just made it look easy on Saturday night. As a whole, Grantham’s defense allowed 285 total yards to the Aggies, but over half of those came in fourth quarter garbage time. State also held the Aggies to just 14 points. Coming into the game, A&M was averaging over 400 yards and 32 points per game. State forced two interceptions from Texas A&M starting quarterback Kellen Mond, as well, who had just 56 passing yards. All in all, it was a dominant effort from State’s D.
State’s balanced offense is just what it needs.
On the other side of the ball, Mississippi State’s offense looked solid — particularly in the running game. The Bulldogs rushed for 228 yards, with quarterback Nick Fitzgerald accounted for 105 of those. State was also able to spread it out just enough through the air to keep the A&M defense honest, as Fitzgerald threw for 141 yards. All in all, the Bulldogs had a respectable 369 total yards. It was more than enough with the exceptional defensive effort.
A team with momentum
This was a statement win for Mississippi State. Texas A&M came into the game having won five of its previous six contests — with the lone loss coming against No. 1 Alabama. But Mississippi State was able to control the game from start to finish, and never did let A&M off the mat. The Bulldogs have now won three in a row since suffering back-to-back road losses to Georgia and Auburn. They have a favorable schedule moving forward besides a game against the Crimson Tide.