This will be the first year for Mississippi State football under new head coach Mike Leach, and going out on a limb, here’s a bold prediction for the season.
Mississippi State football fans almost sound like they’re an offshoot of the
Oakland Las Vegas Raiders at this point. The mantra “Please, just win” seem to be echoing throughout the Bulldogs community.
An improvement on 2019’s 6-7 overall record and 3-5 record in the SEC is — and should be — expected. But how big of an improvement Mississippi State football lovers actually expect?
With Mike Leach now in control of the program in Starkville and the season (hopefully) quickly approaching, it’s time to make at least one bold prediction for the 2020 football season.
No, I’m not going as far as a national championship hot take or even a spot in the SEC Championship Game in December (oh, but wouldn’t that be sweet?). This prediction is a little more tempered and much more attainable for the Bulldogs.
Mississippi State football will win 10 games in 2020
So just browsing down the Mississippi State football schedule, and not having a firm grasp on the Bulldogs 2-deep roster or what other teams will be bringing to the table, let’s pencil in a few wins for State.
New Mexico, North Carolina State, Tulane and Alabama A&M are all game the Bulldogs should win. The only road game of that group is against NC State. If the Dawgs are losing some of those games, there are some deep-rooted issues. That brings the win total to four.
Coin-flips? It’s likely that Arkansas, Missouri, and Kentucky will probably be wins for State, but they could be highly-contested games that could be swung one way or another by a crucial mistake (special teams, turnovers, etc). Just on the optimistic side let’s give the Bulldogs two out of three in that group.
That brings the total to six wins, one loss. Already bowl eligible.
Potential upset games where Mississippi State will likely be a decided underdog include Texas A&M at home, Alabama on the road, LSU on the road, and Auburn at home. The two home games against the Aggies and Plainsman-War-Tigers are very winnable. On the road against Bama and Orgeron U will be a bit more difficult. Can the Bulldogs split those games? Why not.
Now up to eight wins and three losses.
Which brings us to the Egg Bowl. Leach vs. Kiffin, a clash of the offensive titans, so to speak. Do we really need to discuss this? No. Call it a win for Mississippi State in Oxford, even without landshark-dogs pissing in the end zone to give the Bulldogs an edge.
That’s 9-3, with a bowl game to be played. Obviously not knowing a bowl opponent makes it hard to predict, but it’s safe to say that a 9-win SEC team who has weathered some of the toughest teams in the nation during the regular season should be able to handle any also-ran opponent thrown their way in a bowl.
There you have it, the 2020 season and ten wins.
Now if we can just actually make it to opening week without any further interruptions.