• Mackenzie Mills

STARK RAVING MAD


That's the only way to describe the mood that night. The Razorbacks were traveling to Starkville, where they hadn't won since 2016. Mississippi State team was the No. 16 team in the country, led by an experienced (and highly sought after) new head coach in Mike Leach.


But three touchdowns and four turnovers by the Hogs later, it was the first win of the Sam Pittman Era.


This year, the Bulldogs make their way to Fayetteville, but the Razorbacks will want to make sure the result is the same. Here are three things you need to know about Mississippi State... and how the Hogs can secure another important SEC win:


▶️ Don't Count On The Turnovers: Leach's new quick-timing offense took some adjustment. And without the benefit of a full offseason, it was hard going for the Bulldogs early in the season as they turned the ball over 18 times in the first five games—including four against the Hogs. But then they were turnover-free in three of their final six games. With more time to work out the kinks, the Razorbacks won't get as many free possessions this go around.


▶️ Turned Up The Pressure: The Bulldogs finished the season with 25 total sacks. Not bad on paper... BUT! Nearly half of those sacks (12) came in two games—the LSU opener and the bowl win over Tulsa. That makes just 13 sacks in the nine games between. With so many players returning on defense, the Hogs will have to work a little harder to establish some rhythm in the passing game.


▶️ Anchor Down: The best player on this Mississippi State offense is likely sophomore offensive tackle Chris Cross—a 6-5, 305-pound left tackle who will be incredibly important in helping Leach install his pass-happy ways in Starkville. Arkansas has improved mightily along their defensive line this offseason, but they ranked 109th in college football last season with just 1.4 sacks per game.


SEC Media Days is scheduled to start on Monday, July 19th. Leading up to the event, we'll be breaking down all 12 of the team's opponents in 2021. Up tomorrow? LSU!

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