Miss State Fans Need to Turn off Media Predictions in 2016

Nov 21, 2015; Fayetteville, AR, USA; Mississippi State Bulldogs wide receiver Fred Ross (8) celebrates with wide receiver De
Nov 21, 2015; Fayetteville, AR, USA; Mississippi State Bulldogs wide receiver Fred Ross (8) celebrates with wide receiver De /

It’s hard to believe we are just over four months away from SEC Media Days and just over five months away from the start of fall camp for SEC football, but time flies and it will be here in the blink of an eye.

As we get closer and closer to these very important dates you will begin to see all kinds of prognostications coming out, as the now hundreds and thousands of pundits will begin to tell you what will happen during the 2016 college football season.

As the 2016 college football season draws closer and closer, it’s important for Mississippi State fans to unplug from media predictions this year and take everything with a grain of salt and I’ll tell you why below.

Mississippi State is in a bigtime transition year in 2016, trying to find a new quarterback to replace Dak Prescott – the Bulldogs will be breaking in an entirely new defensive staff and trying to find their rhythm in the running game, something they seemed to lose in 2015.

So with those things alone, compounded with most media member’s lazy research and tendency to go with history, you’re not going to like what you read.

First, let me say that is not a shot at the media or anyone who writes and predicts, but it’s the flat truth. This is something that has gone on for years upon years, where it’s easy to predict Alabama, LSU, Ohio State and others near or at the top, because typically that is what happens.

Once you get out of the upper echelon teams, you have to do research to really know who is a pretender and who is a contender.

It’s easy to go with the status quo and pick teams that are traditionally at the bottom to again finish in the bottom. That’s what you typically see with Mississippi State projected there, but there’s one big problem when talking about the Bulldogs.

Mississippi State finished tied for last place with Arkansas and Auburn in 2009 and since that time the Bulldogs have not finished last or tied for last in the SEC West.

Let that sink in for a minute – Mississippi State hasn’t finished last in the SEC West in over six years, while the Bulldogs have enjoyed six straight bowl games, a New Years Day Six bowl berth and a number one ranking in the country in 2014.

Yet – you will still find numerous pundits that will stick the Bulldogs in the bottom of the SEC West year in and year out.

Just last year, several outlets had the Bulldogs finishing anywhere from 5-7 to 7-5, even though they returned All SEC quarterback Dak Prescott and make no mistake about it, you will see more of the same this year.

This past week you saw this normal, lazy trend of picking the Bulldogs at the bottom of the SEC West continue as SEC Country’s Jay Clemons left Mississippi State out of his initial bowl projections for this year.

Again this isn’t a shot at Jay personally; he just happens to be the first to take the bait and throw the Bulldogs in the bottom of the West in 2016.

Clemons does what you are going to see in most of the SEC projections for 2016, which is throw LSU, Alabama and others to the top and that’s justified.

But then you see a Mark Stoops Kentucky team with a 12-24 collective record grab a bowl projection, but not Mississippi State. Keep in mind Dan Mullen is 7-0 against Kentucky and it’s not even close.

Clemons has the Bulldogs projected at 1-7 in the SEC which means he has the Bulldogs at 5-7 on the year or even 4-8.

The Bulldogs get South Carolina, Auburn, Texas A&M and Arkansas all at home this year and Kentucky on the road.

All these games should be in play for the Bulldogs, as Carolina will be breaking in a new coaching staff, the Bulldogs have won three of the last four against Auburn, closed the gap against Texas A&M and won three straight against the Razorbacks.

But – again, most writers are going to just briefly look at the fact that Dak Prescott is gone, a new defensive staff is in place, and it’s Mississippi State so to the bottom they go.

Don’t expect any deep thorough analysis from 90 percent of pundits on Mississippi State in 2016 because you just aren’t gonna get it.

My suggestion is to turn off all projections until the start of the season. Read them and look at them as almost the comics section of a paper. The Bulldogs have a top 30 recruiting profile, lots of starters returning for 2016 and Dan Mullen will be bowling for the seventh straight time in 2016.

Take my word for it – I’ve been shooting these projections down for five years now and will continue to throw darts in 2016.