Mississippi State’s receivers had to be watching the LSU Tiger’s secondary give up big play after big play in their loss to Georgia and smiling knowing they were next on the schedule. However, it’s best not to get too confident when you play LSU even in a down year on defense with such an inexperienced corp of receivers.
The Bulldogs are led by Jameon Lewis who is coming off a game in which he scored touchdowns running, throwing and catching in the win over Troy. The 5-9, 195-pound junior has already eclipsed his season totals in receptions, yards and touchdowns from a year ago with 12 receptions for 248 yards and two touchdowns. He’s also scored two rushing touchdowns in the past two games.
After Lewis the production sees a big drop in production which is a far cry from last year’s group of receivers led by Chad Bumphis who led the SEC with 12 touchdown receptions. Robert Johnson is second on the team in catches and yards with 10-158, but has yet to catch more than four balls in any game or reach the end zone.
Fred Ross is a promising freshmen the Bulldogs snapped from Oklahoma State before signing day and has seven grabs for 83 yards, but only two games with more than one catch and the 6-2 Tyler, Texas native is still looking for his first score.
Mississippi State has been waiting for tight end Malcolm Johnson to breakout for three years now, but injuries and inconsistency has kept his production extremely low and has been a disappointment thus far in his career. He was on the Mackey Award watch list for the top tight end in the nation, but has a paltry seven receptions for 88 yards. In the last three games he has three games and an average off 11 yards.
LSU was victimized by one of the more productive SEC quarterbacks of all time last week in Aaron Murray who has a much deeper group of targets to throw to including a potential all-SEC tight end in Arthur Lynch. Mississippi State does not have the passing attack that Georgia possesses–but then again not many do–and are hoping last week’s breakdowns were a fluke.
It probably was considering LSU is allowing 173.75 passing yards in their four wins this season. Mississippi State has the No. 45 ranked passing offense with 257.5 yards per game and they’re going to need to hit that average to pick up their first win over LSU since 1999.
If the quarterback duo of Tyler Russell and Dak Prescott can’t make plays in the air against LSU, it could be a long night at Davis Wade Stadium in Starkville, but they’ve seen LSU exposed so the confidence is there.