The Mississippi State Bulldogs enter the season with lots of hype, and for good reason. Nick Fitzgerald, after taking the team back to the Top 25 last year, looks to be an even better version of Dak Prescott this year provided he can return to health after his gruesome injury against the Ole Miss Rebels.
In fact, you could make a legitimate case to move this team up to No. 3. After all, they won six of their final eight games last year with their only two losses coming to the Alabama Crimson Tide and in that fluke game to Ole Miss.
Many analysts feel the same way. However, everybody is forgetting that a coaching change is enough to drop this team down. After all, Dan Mullen was a heck of a coach. Even with Joe Moorhead coming in and taking over, there still have to be some questions.
Also, Fitzgerald’s health is a concern as we already mentioned. And finally, Fitzgerald is suspended for the season-opener against Stephen F. Austin. So there are enough questions to surround this team that people may not be aware of.
That’s why this team is No. 6 in our SEC Power Rankings. But to be fair, that’s the highest of any team changing its head coach. The reasons for that are last year’s strong finish to the season, Fitzgerald’s return to health overall, and the fact that Moorhead himself is an offensive guru who should have no trouble maintaining the success on that side of the ball.
Former Vols defensive coordinator Bob Shoop is running that side of the ball in Starkville as well, now. And he’s with a better system. Amidst all of this, MSU has some questions. And their opener won’t do much to move them up. But they face the Kansas State Wildcats the next week. So things could move quickly here.