Auburn’s big-play offense scored on its first drive of the game and showed MS State their tail lights the rest of it as they went on to destroy them 49-10. The Bulldogs got beat down in every facet of the game from getting off the bus to kicking the ball. They could not figure out whom to defend the Tiger or the War Eagle. The Tiger in the form of Kerryon Johnson attacked from the ground carrying the ball 23 times for 116 yards and three touchdowns which gives him a total of eight in the last two games.
Jarrett Stidham, the War Eagle, picked them apart through the air completing 13 out of 16 pass attempts for 264 yards, two touchdowns with no interceptions. He has started to come into his own looking more confident standing in the pocket with his back against the wall. Auburn was pinned at the one-yard line the Bulldogs defense brought every puppy they had he starred them down and hit Eli Stove on a bomb for 57 yards. That was the start of a 7 play 99-yard scoring drive. That sort of thing just zaps the life out of a football team.
That play was symbolic of MS States night, great effort but no cigar. It was undisciplined mistakes or weird things like the defensive back stumbling on the play. The refs also blew a call that brought back a score with an inadvertent whistle it is not like it was planned it was just one of those nights. The ball did not bounce their way neither did the calls. They had seven inexcusable false starts it is the fourth game of the season that’s depressing in itself.
“Give Auburn a lot of credit; they did a good job making big plays out there on the field. We did a poor job to me. We did everything wrong that you need to do when you come on the road to win a game. If you are going to try to win on the road, we did basically everything you shouldn’t do.” Said MS State Head Coach Dan Mullen.
Auburn had six monster plays of 45 yards plus and the Defense looked like Auburn of old limiting the high-scoring (37 points per game) Bulldogs offense to just 10 points. In fact, they are the only team in the FBS who has held their opponents including defending National Champions Clemson Tigers to 14 points or fewer. They simply dominated
Coach Malzhan was asked about the stat.
“We had a good defense last year and we had a lot of those guys come back this year. You could tell in the spring that it was different. They had a different attitude. They know Coach Steele’s defense inside and out. They’re playing with that edge. I wasn’t aware of that, but that’s a great stat. Hopefully we can keep building up on that.”
The Bulldogs offense could not work any magic QB Fitzgerald threw 33 passes completing 13 for 157 yards. They could find much in the run game either Aeris Williams was held to 49 yards on 15 carries. The Auburn defensive front was just too much for them to handle.
Malzhan spoke well of his QB Jarrett Stidham.
“I think you see him every week getting more and more comfortable. We’re protecting him. The guys are making plays, and our receivers are growing up. They’re making plays down the field, and I think that is all starting to come together. He’s starting to get more comfortable with Chip (Lindsey), and Chip is starting to get more comfortable with him. The last two or three weeks in a row have been very efficient.”
The pick-six by Javaris Davis early in the fourth quarter was the delicious icing on the cake.
It is apparent the game against Clemson was a wake-up call Auburn is hitting on all cylinders on both sides of the ball and are thing SEC Championship. Meanwhile, MS State has been beaten 80-13 in its losses this season.
Next up for Auburn is another SEC foe from Mississippi the Ole Miss. Rebels