LOGAN LOWERY: Changing coaches is not the answer

LOGAN LOWERY

LOGAN LOWERY

STARKVILLE

There is a faction among the Mississippi State fan base that’s calling for Dan Mullen’s head.

While I believe this group to be in the minority, they are vocal and growing in numbers each week as the Bulldogs continue to struggle in the second half of their games.

I’ll be the first to admit that MSU isn’t setting the woods on fire in any phase of the game this season but wanting Mullen gone at this point is absurd.

Has the fan base forgotten where the program was before Mullen arrived in 2009? State had just one winning season in the eight years prior to Mullen taking over, going 29-65 during that span. Only twice did the Bulldogs win more than three games in a season between 2001 and ’08.

Bowl appearances

Mullen is 33-25 in four-plus years in Starkville and is just the second head coach in the school’s 113-year history on the gridiron to take his team to three straight bowl games. His .569 winning percentage is the highest since Darrell Royal in 1954-55 (12-8, .600).

In SEC play, Mullen is 14-21 (.400) while in the previous eight seasons Mississippi State was just 13-51 (.203). He is already fourth on the school’s all-time wins list and has a higher winning percentage than Jackie Sherrill, who went 75-75-2 in 13 seasons and has already won as many bowl games.

There are those that will point to Mullen’s lack of success against Top 25 opponents as he’s just 2-19 or the fact that he is only 5-21 against the SEC West. From 2001-08, Mississippi State went 4-26 against top 25 foes and 7-34 inside the Western Division, so Mullen hasn’t downgraded the program in either aspect.

Of course, things have also gotten much tougher in the SEC West during Mullen’s tenure with the addition of Texas A&M and the fact that teams within the division have played in the national championship game in the last four years – including a head-to-head battle two seasons ago.

Let’s put things in perspective a little bit. State was awful prior to Mullen’s arrival and has been decent since. In fact, this decade has started out better for the Bulldogs than any since the 1910s.

So for all the “Chicken Little” fans, put down your pitch forks and torches and ride things out with Mullen a while longer. With 28 straight home sellouts, over $100 million in facility upgrades and 17 starters returning for a favorable 2014 schedule, now isn’t the time to make a change.

Logan Lowery (logan.lowery@ journalinc.com) covers MSU for the Daily Journal. He blogs daily at insidemsusports.com.

  • The Ghost of Col. Reb

    Most of his SEC West wins came at the expense of Ole Miss. Believe it or not Sylvester Croom is the reason for Mullin’s early success. The program certainly hasn’t shown marked improvement this season. When it comes to SEC football, you are only as good as your last win. Mullen will get one more year, but I guarantee, if he loses the next two to Ole Miss, he will be fired. That’s all state people seem to care about, really. That would be a good poll…would you rather have a coach that wins 70% of his games or one that beats OM every year? Another poll… Manny Diaz or Dan Mullen as head coach?

    • Kevin Anderson

      We don’t measure ourselves with a win or loss to Ole Miss. We measure ourselves by or win loss record, as does every school. We really don’t care about you guys as much as you would like us to. I would rather win 11 games a year than care if you beat us.

      • The Ghost of Col. Reb

        that wasn’t the question. state will never win 11 games, ever,ever.

        • TrueMaroon5

          And I’m sure you think UM will. Oh, wait, the Apostle Hugh is the coach…..so it’s meant to be….

          • Kevin Anderson

            The Ghost of Col. Reb. Well, when you get to that game in Atlanta, or Omaha, or the final four maybe I will take you serious. Until then it’s just a mid to low tier SEC team trying to talk smack to a mid to low SEC tier team.

          • The Ghost of Col. Reb

            It’s a question assclown. OM will never ever win 11 games consistently, either. I live in the real world. The question is, Would State people rather beat OM every year or go 7-5/8-4 every year but losing to OM? And yes, we can safely say that will be a comparable record for my Ole Miss Rebels each year. Neither team has any kind of dynasty going on. I’ve never understood exactly why, but it is what it is.

          • ticwillow

            no body rode it out with coach croom. why should anyone ride it out with mullen.
            same situation… different time

          • The Ghost of Col. Reb

            Croom did a lot more for State than most people give him credit for….and, he beat Alabama.

          • Kevin Anderson

            Well Doucher, I would rather win 7 or 8 games and leave you guys at home during bowl season. Or in the real world win enough to go to a great bowl game and ruin your season by betting Ole Miss.

          • The Ghost of Col. Reb

            You must be retarded, you cannot understand a simple question. I was not making a statement about your crappy team.

          • Kevin Anderson

            I wasn’t talking to you. Funny you answer to doucher though.

    • Kevin

      I agree, neither State College nor Ole Miss will ever win 11 games as SEC members. I doubt they ever win 10 unless one has 9 wins and a bowl win. The best either school can hope for is 7-5 or 6-6 with the occasional outstanding 8 or 9 win season.

    • Tupelo12

      Oh yeah, Ole Miss fans definitely don’t care about the Egg Bowl. They’re way above that. That’s why when they won last year they stormed the field like a bunch of wild monkeys. What a joke. I can’t wait for Freeze to slip so Ole Miss will disown him like every other coach they’ve ever had. Dixie playin’ SOBs.

  • Thile

    Dispelling silly messageboard rumors = journalism?