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Jaguars upwardly Mobile: South Alabama upsets MSU

Posted 9/4/2016 in College Sports

STARKVILLE -- As the sun beat down on a half-empty Davis Wade Stadium, Mississippi State football coach Dan Mullen was faced with an improbable situation. After watching MSU build a 17-0 halftime lead, Mullen was left to give his team's fate to kicker Westin Graves with nine seconds remaining. A four-touchdown favorite entering Saturday's season opener against South Alabama, Mullen had to hope Graves was going to revert to the form that saw him make two field goals earlier in the game, including a career-long 48-yarder.


Williams doesn't remain backup QB long

Posted 9/4/2016 in College Sports

STARKVILLE -- Damian Williams' role as a backup didn't last long. The Mississippi State junior quarterback served as Nick Fitzgerald's backup Saturday at the start of the season-opening game against South Alabama at Davis Wade Stadium, but Williams entered the game after two series and led a touchdown drive on his first series. From there, Williams played all but one series and statistically had a solid day, but he and the Bulldogs came up on the short end of a 21-20 upset.


Eighteen players make debuts for MSU vs. South Alabama

Posted 9/4/2016 in College Sports

STARKVILLE -- After a lot of turnover in the offseason, 18 players made their debuts Saturday in the Mississippi State football team's season-opening 21-20 loss to South Alabama at Davis Wade Stadium. Redshirt freshman linebacker Leo Lewis was one of those players who saw his first playing time. He led MSU with nine tackles (two for loss).



Ole Miss hopes Taylor ready for test

Posted 9/4/2016 in College Sports

OXFORD -- Ole Miss football coach Hugh Freeze made a surprise choice to protect his team's most valuable asset. Junior Rod Taylor will be the starter at left tackle when No. 11 Ole Miss plays No. 4 Florida State on Monday in Orlando, Florida. That means the 6-foot-3, 329-pounder -- who has never made a start at either tackle spot -- will be charged with protecting quarterback Chad Kelly's blindside against the Seminoles' talented defense.



Short-handed No. 1 EMCC falls to Jones County JC

Posted 9/2/2016 in College Sports

ELLISVILLE -- Dakota Allen, Tim Bonner, and Chauncey Rivers made plays against Division I opposition last season. The setting was much different Thursday night when they played in the season opener for their new team, top-ranked East Mississippi Community College. Still, leadership was needed and plays were to be made. In the end, short-handed EMCC didn't make enough of them in a 27-25 loss to Jones County Junior College before a crowd of 5,500 at Bobcat Stadium.



MSU finally set to kick off 2016 season

Posted 9/2/2016 in College Sports

STARKVILLE -- It has been a long wait for the 2016 college football season since Southeastern Conference Media Days in July. A humid August filled with training camps only made the wait seem that much longer, but that wait and all of the speculation and prognostications will end at 11 a.m. Saturday when the Mississippi State football team plays host to South Alabama at Davis Wade Stadium. The SEC Network will broadcast the game live.



Bradley wants to lead Golden Eagles on defensive line

Posted 9/2/2016 in College Sports

When Dylan Bradley arrived at Southern Mississippi, he had signed on with a football program that went 0-12 the previous season. Three years later, Bradley has been a key cog in getting the Golden Eagles back on the map. Last season, the Noxubee County High School product started 13 games at defensive end and helped the team to the Conference USA championship game and the Heart of Dallas Bowl.



Collins expects big things from Southern Miss this season

Posted 9/2/2016 in College Sports

Trae Collins never will forget his first career start. It was a little more than eight months ago that the Southern Mississippi redshirt sophomore defensive back drew a start against Washington in the Heart of Dallas Bowl. "I worked hard for it for a long time," said Collins, a former New Hope High School standout.



Leonard has impressive debut for EMCC

Posted 9/2/2016 in College Sports

ELLISVILLE -- Raphael Leonard was tired. The East Mississippi Community College sophomore wide receiver wasn't alone. With only 32 players available due to suspensions from a fight last season at Mississippi Delta C.C., top-ranked EMCC didn't have very much depth for its season opener Thursday at Jones County Junior College.



Johnson looks to lead Jaguars' ground game

Posted 9/2/2016 in College Sports

South Alabama football running back Xavier Johnson can't help but smile as he looks back on his sophomore season. Johnson set school records with 956 rushing yards and 1,447 all-purpose yards as the Jaguars finished 5-7. He ranked fifth in school history with nine total touchdowns, including seven rushing. He had five 100-plus yards games -- the most in a season by a Jaguar running back against Division I opponents. For his efforts, he was an honorable mention All-Sun Belt Conference selection. Johnson's performance has made him want more as a follow-up.



Dale eager to play bigger role on MSU's defensive line

Posted 9/1/2016 in College Sports

STARKVILLE -- Torrey Dale has a good feeling about this season. With a new defensive coordinator and new schemes, the Mississippi State football senior feels like his production will increase and he will be an anchor for the defensive line. Playing in the shadow of Ryan Brown, Chris Jones, and current defensive end A.J. Jefferson, Dale often has been overlooked. A projected starter, Dale is expected to get a chance to shine at 11 a.m. Saturday when MSU plays host to South Alabama at Davis Wade Stadium. The game will be broadcast on the SEC Network.



Return of safety Conner will be big for No. 11 Ole Miss

Posted 9/1/2016 in College Sports

OXFORD -- Of the four main players from Ole Miss' talented 2013 recruiting class, three of them are now millionaires. Then there's safety Tony Conner. He'd likely be in the NFL right now -- along with defensive lineman Robert Nkemdiche, receiver Laquon Treadwell, and offensive lineman Laremy Tunsil -- if it hadn't been for a major knee injury against Alabama last season that caused him to miss more than half of his junior year.


EMCC Stephens ready to make changes as he coaches No. 1 Lions

Posted 8/31/2016 in College Sports

SCOOBA - East Mississippi Community College football coach Buddy Stephens watched with anticipation and nervousness a private screening of the Netflix documentary "Last Chance U" in April.


Ross ready to make most of senior season by leading MSU

Posted 8/30/2016 in College Sports

STARKVILLE -- Fred Ross was supposed to be off limits in practice.


Fitzgerald, Williams will battle to be MSU's starting QB

Posted 8/30/2016 in College Sports

STARKVILLE -- Even with an on-going quarterback battle, Dan Mullen was in a good mood Monday. The Mississippi State football coach joked with the media when the subject of who will be his team's starting quarterback cam up. Mullen announced that "Nick Williams" will be the starting quarterback, a play on the names of sophomore Nick Fitzgerald and junior Damian Williams.


Freeze excited about chance to play No. 4 Florida State

Posted 8/30/2016 in College Sports

After months of offseason speculation involving a NCAA investigation of the program, the Ole Miss football team is ready to get down to the business of playing games on the field. No. 11 Ole Miss will open the regular season at 7 p.m. Monday against No. 4 Florida State (ESPN) in Orlando, Florida. Ole Miss coach Hugh Freeze met the media Monday and was bubbling with the usual game-week optimism.



Green anchors MSU linebackers

Posted 8/28/2016 in College Sports

STARKVILLE -- Gerri Green was ready to be Richie Brown's backup at middle linebacker.



MSU football player James arrested for fourth time

Posted 8/28/2016 in College Sports

STARKVILLE -- Mississippi State football senior defensive lineman Nick James was arrested early Sunday morning, Oktibbeha County Chief Deputy Chadd Garnett confirmed.


Bulldogs have plenty of depth at running back

Posted 8/27/2016 in College Sports

STARKVILLE -- Greg Knox knows how important his position group will be this season. The Mississippi State football running backs coach is getting his guys prepared for more of a run-oriented offense. With the loss of quarterback Dak Prescott, MSU coach Dan Mullen said the Bulldogs may try to run the ball more.


Forside set to play bigger role for ICC

Posted 8/27/2016 in College Sports

FULTON -- It seemed like everything had changed when former West Point High School standout Kadarius Forside returned to the Itawamba Community College practice field prior to the start of the 2016 season.



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