Bulldogs look to build upon the momentum
Mississippi State quarterback Tyler Russell (17) may or may not get his third-straight start against UT Martin on Saturday. (Photo by Kim Murrell, SDN)
Mississippi State's first Southeastern Conference win over Kentucky last week has provided confidence and a positive start to the second half of the season.
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After the bye week, MSU head coach Dan Mullen said the Kentucky game was the start of the second half of the season and his Bulldogs started that second half on the right foot.
After beginning 0-4 in SEC play, the Bulldogs 28-16 win over the Wildcats finally broke the goose egg in the conference win column and got them back to .500 overall.
That win over Kentucky has given Mullen some extra hope for the second half of the season.
"We are hoping to build momentum as we get into the second part of our season," said Mullen. "It's huge for us to finish strong and get ourselves a great bowl game and continue the momentum we are trying to build and to build this program up to the championship level."
One key to a championship program is having a solid quarterback to lead the team. For Mississippi State, they have two quarterbacks who are leading the team at the moment.
Ever since the UAB game, where Tyler Russell took over for Chris Relf, there has been a quarterback controversy that led to Russell being the starter against South Carolina the next week.Â
Russell also started the Kentucky game, but Relf didn't have to sit out the entire game like he did in the South Carolina game as MSU ran a two-quarterback offense.
As for the starter for this weeks non-conference game against the UT Martin Skyhawks, Mullen will let them know Friday night, which means there is still some evaluating to do.
"We'll figure it out as the week goes," said Mullen. "We'll see who performs at the best level and see who has the best grasp of the game plan and who's ready to perform the best."
Relf and Russell operated the two-quarterback offense last week seamlessly which Mullen credits to practice. Also, the two quarterbacks might have only been involved in a "controversy" for the past few weeks, but according to Mullen they've been in a constant competition since the spring.
"We rotate the guys at practice," said Mullen. "That quarterback competition has (raised) the comfortable level of going on and off the field and performing at a high level when your number is called."