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2013 College Football Preview

2013 College Football Preview

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Published by The Dispatch
A preview of all area college football teams.
A preview of all area college football teams.

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Published by: The Dispatch on Aug 28, 2013
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03/24/2014

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By MATTHEW STEVENS
mstevens@cdispatch.com
STARKVILLE — Football isusually about loud, inspirationalspeeches. The sport is normally seen asa physical battle won in weight rooms. Conventional wisdom sug-gests violence can’t be hardwiredinto a microchip. At Mississippi State University,the game o ootball is still about those things, but the math geekis much more involved, too. InStarkville, MSU coach Dan Mullenis trying to build synergy by com-bining the physical side and the sta-tistical aspect o the game.“Football is a big, big mathgame,” Mullen said. “There’s a lot o statistics in it and a lot o geom-etry in it. It just also happens to in- volve a lot o testosterone and other things that aren’t described in thesame way as math.”Mullen’s coaching sta has tak-en a page rom Oakland A’s Gener-al Manager Billy Beane, one o themen who helped bring sabermet-rics to Major League Baseball andHollywood, with the movie “Mon-eyball.” Sabermetrics is the special-ized analysis o baseball throughobjective evidence, especially baseball statistics that measuresin-game activity. While Beane andthe A’s used the analysis to fnd theplayers best suited to help the o-ense, Mullen and his coaches havecrunched the numbers to developguidelines that establish a direct relationship between success andthe number o times players touchthe ball.“The big issue when you start getting into SEC play is changingthe feld position,” MSU oensivecoordinator Les Koenning said. “I  we can sustain those long drivesand get in the end zone, that’s thegoal right. Do we want big plays? Yes, but we have to put it in our 
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www.cdispatch.com
sunday, august 18, 2013college football preview
mississippi state UNiVeRsitY bUlldogs
Athletic Website:
www.hailstate.com;
Twitter:
http://twitter.com/HailState
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Stay with us before and after the game! 
© The Dispatch
2013 Sd
Aug. 31 Vs. OklahomaSt. (At Houston,Texas)Sept. 7 ALCORN STATESept. 14 At AuburnSept. 21 TROYOct. 5 LSUOct. 12 BOWLINGGREENOct. 24 KENTUCKYNov. 2 At S. CarolinaNov. 9 At Texas A&MNov. 16 ALABAMANov. 23 At Arkansas(Little Rock)Nov. 28 OLE MISSHOME GAMES IN CAPS
2012 Rsts
Sept. 1 W, 56-9JACKSON STATESept. 8 W, 28-10AUBURNSept. 15 W, 30-24At Troy Sept. 22 W, 30-10SOUTH ALABAMAOct. 6 W, 27-14At Kentucky Oct. 13 W, 41-31TENNESSEEOct. 20 W, 45-3MIDDLETENNESSEEOct. 27 L, 7-38At AlabamaNov. 3 L, 13-38TEXAS A&MNov. 10 L, 17-37At LSUNov. 17 W, 45-14ARKANSASNov. 24 L, 24-41At Ole MissJan. 1 L, 20-34Vs. NorthwesternTaxSlayer.comGator BowlHOME GAMES IN CAPS
See
 MSU OFFENSE
, 5
Last season, the University of Mississippipulled away in the second half to beat Mis-sissippi State University to win the Egg BowlTrophy. This season, the game is back inStarkville, and the Bulldogs will try to regaincontrol of the coveted piece of hardware.
FOOTBALL 2013
A publication o 
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P.O. Box 511Columbus, MS 39703 (662) 328-2424 
Publisher
Birney Imes
Managing Editor
Slim Smith
Sports
Adam MinichinoMatt StevensScott Walters
Cover Design
Stacy Clark
Photographers
Luisa PorterMicah GreenDavid Allen WilliamsStan Beall
Graphic Artists
Jackie TaylorErnest Rogers
Production
Tina PerryAnne Murphy
aboUt tHe CoVeRiNside
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The Dispatch
wouldlike to thank the media relations andsports inormationdepartments at MississippiState University, East Mississippi Community College, Itawamba C.C., theUniversity o Mississippi,and the University o Alabama or their helpin gathering all o theinormation in this year’ssection.
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Each week duringthe season, we will havespecial eatures or MSUand EMCC, as well asstories about ormer localootball players who areplaying ootball at other state junior colleges. Every Wednesday or Thursday,we will spotlight JUCOs.Every Friday, we willpreview MSU’s game that week.
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A special thanks toStacy Clark or designingthe cover.
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Fans canollow Matt Stevens’coverage o MSU at www.cdispatch.com and onhis blog, which you canaccess on the website.You can also stay abreast o the latest MSU news by ollowing him on Twitter at:@matthewcstevens.
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The Dispatch
 encourages all ans to callus with their commentsand questions. You canreach us at 662-327-1297or e-mail inormation tosports@cdispatch.com.
n
 Also, i you know o any ormer local high schoolathletes playing a sport incollege, call us at 662-327-1297 or e-mail us at sports@cdispatch.com.
eam Page
MSU ............................2-5EMCC .............................6Itawamba C.C. ...............8Ole Miss ....................9-10Alabama ..................11-12
tHaNKs /aboUt Us
Dispatch File Photo
Mississippi State University running back LaDarius Perkins had 1,024 yards and eight touchdowns as theBulldogs’ primary back. He likely will be called on to play an even bigger role to make sure coach Dan Mullen hasthe balance on offense he wants.
MSu hopeS ‘Moneyball’ eQualS balance
M, ig st s srmtris t z mrs, fd ws t mximiz ws
 
By MATTHEW STEVENS
mstevens@cdispatch.com
STARKVILLE — At Mississippi State Uni-versity, each player goesthrough what the coach-es describe as a our-stepprogression that involvesanswering our questions. What to do?How to do it? When to do it? Why you’re doing it?In just his third sea-son on the campus andhis second on the activeroster, MSU sophomorelinebacker BenardrickMcKinney has arrived at the fnal stage o his col-lege career. The return-ing middle linebacker andnew leader o the Bull-dogs’ deense now must know why his coachesare doing things to helpyounger players under-stand and join him on thefeld aster.Last season, MSU’swizard o the why stagewas senior linebacker Cameron Lawrence —McKinney’s mentor inhis frst season. Any timeLawrence said somethingin a positional meeting,McKinney wrote it down.Any time McKinney had a question, he knew whereto go or the answer. About the only thing Lawrenceand McKinney didn’t seeeye to eye on last seasonwas hair length.“He is a guy that islike a sponge picking upeverything I do or say out there every day,”Lawrence said last year.“He is going to be a real-ly scary player. Ater I’mgone, he’ll be the man.He’s already doing specialthings.”Lawrence was amousor understanding MSU’sdeensive philosophy andconcepts. He also gainednotoriety or his ability to read the opponent’sschemes, like he claimedhe was able to do in MSU’s28-10 victory against Au-burn University in itsSoutheastern Conerenceopener at Davis WadeStadium. Lawrence saidhe was so locked in to Au-burn’s play calling that he was able to use hand sig-nal to let his secondary teammates know whenthe Tigers were passingor running.“When you play us, I’mgoing to get in your headearly on, and I saw they  weren’t ready or our planrom the frst snap on,”Lawrence said. “There was a point in the frst hal where we knew what the play was and who was going to get the ball. They couldn’t conuse uson anything they were do-ing.”Lawrence’s knack or reading the other teamattracted attention, whichmeant more opportunitiesor McKinney, who cap-italized and was namedto the league’s All-Fresh-man team. McKinney  was named a reshman All-American by CBSSports, Phil Steele, Scout.com, and FoxSportsNext ater tying or second inthe nation among resh-man and sixth overall inthe SEC with 102 tackles.He also earned Co-SECFreshman o the Weekhonors ater making 12tackles (10 solo), one tack-le or loss, and his frst two career pass breakupsin a victory at Kentucky.“I think everybody knows where No. 10(Lawrence’s number) ison the feld now and may-be Benardrick is gettingthe beneft o that withthe opportunities to makeplays,” MSU linebackerscoach Geo Collins saidin October 2012. Without Lawrencethis season, McKinney must now think more or himsel, fgure out pat-terns and tendencies, anduse his athletic ability tomake stops. Ater fnish-ing second on the teamin tackles behind Law-rence (120), more will beexpected rom the 6-oot-5, 235-pound McKinney, who was named this sum-mer to the Butkus Awardand Bednarik Award Watch Lists or collegelinebackers and deensiveplayers.“From Day One guyson this team know I liketo be a vocal leader on ando the feld,” McKinney said. “It’s time or me to
T
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D
ispaTch
www.cdispatch.com
Sunday, auguSt 18, 2013
3
college football preview
mississippi state UNiVeRsitY bUlldogs
Athletic Website:
www.hailstate.com;
Twitter:
http://twitter.com/HailState
ALLEN CHIROPRACTIC CENTER 
Dr. David Allen, D.C. - MSU Alumnus 
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Hwy 12W. At Willow Rd.,Starkville,MS
© The Dispatch
See
 MCKINNEY 
, 13
City Station Frequency
Aberdeen WWZQ 1240 AMAmory WAMY 1580 AMBatesville WBLE 100.5 FMBiloxi/Gulfport WBUV 104.9 FMClarksdale WROX 1450 AMClarksdale WROX 96.1 FMColumbia WCJU 104.9 FMCorinth WKCU 1350 AMFerriday KWTG 104.7 FMFrench Camp WFCA 107.9 FMGreenville WDMS 100.7 FMGreenwood/Indianola WTCD 96.9 FMGrenada WOHT 92.3 FMHattiesburg WMXI 98.1 FMJackson WRKS 105.9 FMLucedale WRBE 106.9 FMMemphis, Tenn. KQPN 730 AMMeridian WMOX 1010 AMMonticello WRQO 102.1 FMPhiladelphia WWSL 102.3 FMStarkville/West Point WKBB 100.9 FMTylertown WTYL 97.7 FMTupelo WXWX 96.3 FMVicksburg WVBG 105.5 FMWaynesboro WABO 105.5 FMWinona WONA 95.1 FMYazoo City WBYP/WELZ 107.1 FM/1460 AM
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The Biloxi/Gulfport and the Waynesboro stations are the only ones that won’t carryMississippi State University football coach Dan Mullen’s weekly call-in show, DawgTalk.In 2012, the show was from 7-8 p.m. Thursdays from Aug. 30 to Nov. 21. Fans can callinto the show by dialing 866-998-4893.
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In 2012, a relationship began between the Southeastern Conference, its member institutions, and Sirius/XM Satellite Radio, which became the exclusive providers of satellite radio in the SEC in 2007. MSU’s regular-season games will be offered throughXM this season, a minimum of eight of which will feature the official MSU broadcast. For more information, please visit Sirius/XM.
Radio affiliatesCoaChiNg staff
Head Coach
Dan Mullen
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Tony Hughes — AssistantHead Coach / Safeties /Recruiting Coordinator
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Geoff Collins —Defensive Coordinator /Linebackers
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Billy Gonzales — WideReceivers
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John Hevesy —Offensive Line /Running Game Coordinator
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Greg Knox —Running Backs
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Les Koenning —Offensive Coordinator /Quarterbacks
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Scott Sallach —Tight Ends
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Deshea Townsend —Defensive Backs
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David Turner —Defensive Line
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Matt Balis —Head Strength Coach
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Jon Clark — Assistant AD/ Football Operations
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Rockey Felker — Directorof Player Personnel / HighSchool Relations
Defense needs McKinney to live up to All-America accolades
David Allen Williams/Dispatch File Photo; Dispatch File Photo
TOP: Benardrick McKinney tied for second in the nationamong freshman and sixth overall in the SEC with 102tackles. He will be counted on to anchor the defensewith rising senior Denico Autry (ABOVE), who had foursacks and was second best on the team with nine anda half tackles for loss.
“h  n   ry cryyr. ar i’n, ’  n. h’ ryn cn. ”
Former Mississippi StateUniversity linebackerCam Lawrence
“i’  r   n wuy w n n rr n  n. ”
Mississippi StateUniversity redshirtsophomore linebackerBenardrick McKinney

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