Game Day Eve: Tough First Test for Collins, Defense

This week’s game: MSU (0-0) vs. No. 13 Oklahoma State (0-0), in Houston, Saturday, 2:30 p.m., ABC/ESPN2 (Bob Wischusen play-by-play, Rod Gilmore analyst, Quint Kessenich sideline)


Mississippi State has a new guy in charge of its defense, and his first test will be a big one. Geoff Collins, who was promoted to defensive coordinator after two years as co-DC, has been working to get his guys ready for one of the nation’s top offenses in Oklahoma State. You can read Logan Lowery‘s story about it in today’s Journal.

The Bulldogs are hoping to be more aggressive, to cause chaos for opposing offenses. Collins has some good personnel to execute that, from defensive end Denico Autry to linebacker Matt Wells to safety Nickoe Whitley. It’ll be interesting to see how aggressive he can be against an up-tempo team like OSU, but as this ESPN story notes, he’s certainly done all he can to get the players ready to play fast.

This game could wind up a shootout, sorta like that wacky Ole Miss-Vanderbilt game last night. MSU should be able to move the ball on the Cowboys’ defense, which also has a new, aggressive-minded coordinator in Glenn Spencer.

I’ll be on the road most of today but will try to get a prediction blog posted at some point. It’s my final MSU game to cover, and it should be fun.

Now, let’s take a quick glance at the rest of the SEC schedule, noting that Ole Miss beat Vandy last night, and South Carolina defeated North Carolina.

• Toledo at Florida, 11:21 a.m., SEC Network

• Rice at Texas A&M, noon, ESPN

• UL Lafayette at Arkansas, 3 p.m., FSN

• Alabama vs. Virginia Tech (Atlanta), 4:30 p.m., ESPN

• Austin Peay at Tennessee, 5 p.m., PPV

• Washington State at Auburn, 6 p.m., ESPNU

• Western Kentucky at Kentucky, 6 p.m., ESPNews

• Murray State at Missouri, 6 p.m., PPV

• Georgia at Clemson, 7 p.m., ABC

• LSU at TCU, 8 p.m., ESPN

I am the online content coordinator for I also co-host The Memo and Prep Rally podcasts and host the Newsbreak program. Previously at the Journal, I covered Mississippi State athletics (2008-13), high schools (2004-08), and was on the copy desk (2002-04).

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  • J L MC

    Why will it be your last MSU game to cover? Where you going?

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