Monday, April 19, 2010
Reviewing Mississippi State's spring game
By ESPN.com staff
The first thing to know about Mississippi State's Maroon-White spring game is that the Bulldogs drew 34,127 fans, which was billed as the largest spring attendance in "Mississippi" history.
Also, as Kyle Veazey of The Jackson Clarion-Ledger pointed out, the last four digits from that crowd (4-1-2-7) reflected the score from Mississippi State's win over Ole Miss last season in the Egg Bowl.
Given the way Mississippi State coach Dan Mullen hasn't been afraid to stoke the fire in the rivalry, probably not.
Chris Relf won the quarterback battle Saturday, but he also had the benefit of playing with most of the offensive line starters. He was 13-of-24 for 184 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions.
Redshirt freshman Tyler Russell got off to a rocky start, as his first pass of the game was intercepted by Damein Anderson. Russell finished 12-of-27 for 125 yards and was intercepted twice. He was also sacked three times.
Spring games often times aren't the best indicator, but Relf looks to be a little bit ahead of Russell coming out of the spring. But they're so different as players that the Bulldogs should be able to use them both next season, depending on the situation.
Mississippi State's defense played it pretty vanilla, but Mullen mentioned safeties Nickoe Whitley and Dennis Thames as players who jumped out at him during the spring game.
The race to replace Anthony Dixon at running back will rage into the summer. The reality is that it's probably going to be a couple of different guys. Vick Ballard and Montrell Conner both showed flashes Saturday.