Mississippi State at Kansas State fearless prediction and game preview.
Date: Saturday, September 8
Game Time: 12:00 ET
Venue: Bill Snyder Family Stadium, Manhattan, KS
Mississippi State (1-0) vs. Kansas State (1-0) Game Preview
Was Kansas State just being Kansas State?
In the 27-24 close-call win over South Dakota, did it simply need a little while to wake up, and now it’s going to start playing like it’s supposed to?
With 13 penalties and four turnovers, this wasn’t the type of Wildcat team that’s supposed to be a factor in the Big 12 title chase.
Mississippi State, on the other hand, looked every bit the part of a sleeper in the SEC West, with an explosive 63-6 win over Stephen F. Austin to start out the Joe Moorhead era with a record-setting bang.
It didn’t matter that starting QB Nick Fitzgerald was suspended, the offense couldn’t have been any more amazing. And now, it’s a battle between the ball-control, steady team, and the high-powered one with a world of upside.
This is the third time the two teams have faced each other, with Mississippi State wining 24-21 in 1977 and 21-16 in 1974.
One Reason Why Mississippi State Will Win
Does Kansas State have the offense to keep up the pace?
To win, the Wildcats have to win the turnover battle and can’t make more mistakes than the Bulldogs, and they’ll have to come up with a defensive stop or three.
Against South Dakota, the two quarterback situation didn’t work all that well, with Alex Delton and Skylar Thompson combining to hit 13-of-28 passes with a touchdown and two picks. Worse yet, there was almost nothing happening down the field.
The offense came through when it had to, but now it has to deal with a loaded Mississippi State secondary that’s far better than the Wildcat receivers. It also has to keep up if the Bulldog O can get up fast.
Yes, it was against SFA, but the passing game blew up for almost 12 yards per throw and averaged almost six yards per run.
And that was with the backup quarterback. Keytaon Thompson is amazing, but now the O gets Nick Fitzgerald back.
One Reason Why Kansas State Will Win
The Kansas State defense isn’t Stephen F. Austin’s.
The linebacking corps is in place to keep Fitzgerald and Thompson from going off, and the defensive backs are just strong enough to force the Bulldogs to go to the quick short-range passes more than it did last week.
Yes, the Wildcats couldn’t stop turning the ball over in the first half against South Dakota, and they couldn’t stop committing penalties. But they also held onto the ball for almost 38 minutes.
Mississippi State might be explosive, but as long as the Kansas State defense can come up with third down stops on a steady basis, and if it can slow the game down to its level, it should be fine.
Use the O line, power away on the talented Bulldog D line, set up easy third down tries. Just don’t give up the big play.
What’s Going To Happen
This is when the Mississippi State defensive front takes over.
Kansas State will have its moments by going on long, tough marches, but when absolutely needed, the Bulldog defense will hold firm. It’ll be great at getting behind the line, stopping a Wildcat offense that won’t be able to hit the deep shot even if it does have time to work.
MSU will get up in the first quarter, and even though it’ll be pushed, it’ll never be out of control. It’ll answer every Wildcat score with a sharp drive to stay ahead.
Fearless Prediction & Line
Mississippi State 34, Kansas State 26
Line: COMING, o/u: COMING
ATS Confidence out of 5: COMING
Must See Rating: 3
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