Mississippi State tailback LaDarius Perkins celebrates a touchdown this season. (Photo by Kim Murrell, SDN)
Mississippi State has found a good mix with its wide receivers this season.
Junior tailback LaDarius Perkins has proven that he can give junior quarterback Tyler Russell a good target in the passing game.
"He knows if he gets matched up on a linebacker, not to many linebackers in the SEC can cover him," Russell said. "I trust him to go up and make a play for me."
Russell has shown quite a bit of trust in Perkins.
"I'm not really sure what we are going to do." Russell said. "Whatever coach thinks we should do, that's what we do."
Perkins was matched up with a linebacker twice last week and ran wheel routes into the end zone. Russell found him both times for touchdowns.
"Coming in, I knew we were going to throw the ball a good bit," Perkins said. "I knew I was going to be a part of the passing game. Tyler had a great game."
In the past two meetings with Ole Miss, Perkins has had pretty of good games.
In a 31-23 win in Oxford in 2009, Perkins rushed for 98 yards on 13 carries. He caught three passes for 140 yards and two touchdowns.
In last year's 31-3 victory in Starkville, he had three catches for 27 yards and one score. He rushed the football seven times for 64 yards and one touchdown. That year, the Bulldogs had Vick Ballard, who is now with the Indianapolis Colts. This time around, Perkins will be the main guy in the backfield.
"He has done well the last couple games against those guys," Russell said. "He has done really well for us this year as a starter. It's hard to defend the run and the pass. He's really good at catching the ball out of the backfield."
When the No. 25 (Associated Press) Bulldogs (8-3, 4-3) take the field against the Rebels (5-6, 2-5) Saturday in Oxford, getting some of those same matchups will determine quite a bit.
"As we're looking at the matchups they give us, a lot of that determines what read, and how the defense is going play it," MSU head coach Dan Mullen said. "If they give it to him, then you expect him to have that type of game. If not, then they don't."
The Bulldogs used the option game to their advantage last week. Russell and Perkins have gotten comfortable with it and it may be used Saturday.
"We feel we made the option work this past weekend," Perkins said. "We probably can make it work against these guys too. I don't know the gameplan right now. We're going to practice and see what is in it, but I'm sure the team is going to be able to execute it, whatever it is, and execute at a high level also."
Russell can either pitch the ball to Perkins or keep it himself. He has done a good job of reading the defense and making the right decision with the football.
"I'm not really sure what we are going to do," Russell said. "Whatever coach thinks we should do, that's what we do."
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