On the Links: GameDay Eve

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One day until Mississippi State hits the field against No. 1 Alabama. To review all the fascinating facts about this matchup:

• The last time MSU faced a No. 1 team was 1998, when it lost to Tennessee in the SEC title game.

• The last time MSU beat a No. 1 team was, of course, 1980 against Alabama (6-3).

• Coaching the linebackers for Alabama that year was Sylvester Croom.

• Bama hasn’t scored an offensive touchdown against State since 2004.

• If MSU wins, Croom will be the first coach ever to beat Bama three times in his first five tries.

Now, to the links! I had a story today on freshman strong safety Charles Mitchell, who has stepped right in and played well as a backup. He moved up to second on the depth chart behind Keith Fitzhugh this week.

From the Birmingham News, a story on the Crimson Tide’s return man, Javier Arenas. And from the News’ Alabama blog, we learn that Mississippi native Terry Grant, the Tide’s top rusher last year, might see more playing time this week than he has thus far.

On the prognostication front, ESPN.com’s Chris Low is taking Alabama, but in a close one.

And in totally unrelated subject matter, I had an update on local truck racer Jess Williams. He’ll be racing at Memphis Motorsports Park on Saturday.

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4 Responses to “On the Links: GameDay Eve”

  1. darkcooger Says:

    21-6 wouldn’t be so bad. I mean, a loss is a loss, but at least it wouldn’t be a hammering like we got from LSU last year.

    I have a hard time staying on the “sack Croom” bandwagon. I hop up there after a stupid play call or a bad loss, but then I wind up being back on his side again after a little while. Anyone else experience that? I mean, I really like the man. I’d love for us to keep him, but I wonder if he’s head coach material.

    How can we keep him AND get what we need in coaching? Would better assistants solve a lot of these problems? I know Woody is the guy with the giant target on his back this season (and if he’s really the one calling the plays, he deserves that target), but he can’t be the only one. Our defense hasn’t been as strong this year and our special teams has been… well, “special.” What needs to happen to build a real football program at State?

  2. darkcooger Says:

    Also, in a significant departure from our century-long history of playing Alabama, we are 50% in our last 12 meetings.

  3. carwwest Says:

    no cooger, that does not happen to me but i can say i was never really on the crxxm bandwagon in the first place…

    but it starts with the head man, crxxm…he is in charge of putting the right people in the right positions to succeed whether it be a coordinator or player….i know a lot of people like the man, but i hate the coach…he is just not good, bottom line…doesnt ever take responsibility for bad play, constantly making questionable (im being nice) calls during games, now burning redshirts, talking about moving robinson to defense, etc…keeping wxxdy this long should be enough to get him fired…i just dont see a head coach in crxxm, more of a position and players coach…

  4. deaddawg1 Says:

    Dark, I went through the on again-off again phase for four years. I thought things had finally come together at the end of last year, but looking back I realized we had a lot of luck at key times and the result gave us a good season. However, it was a fluke. That became evident in our opening game, we were not ready to play and is showed in the result. As for last year’s defense, our defense left and went to South Carolina. I like Croom too, he’s a good man and has lots of good qualities. He may even be a good coach, technically speaking, but a head coach, he is not.
    How can I say that? Well the season record speaks to that. Poor decisions and game mismanagement is ever present. In summary, I came to the conclusion early in the season we are no better now than when Croom came. The only logical answer is to start again with a head coach that has a proven record at some level, not necessarily at division 1. We are paying a salary that is attractive to a lot of good coaches and I know we could get one that will make us a competitive program.

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