College Football
Preview
Mississippi State at Kentucky
When: 3:30 PM ET, Saturday, October 25, 2014
Where: Commonwealth Stadium, Lexington, Kentucky

No. 1 Mississippi State is taking on all challenges and batting them away as it charges toward an SEC crown and a spot in the national championship playoff. The next step for the Bulldogs comes Saturday, when they visit Kentucky. Mississippi State is one of four unbeaten teams left in the country and has yet to score fewer than 34 points in a game behind quarterback and Heisman Trophy candidate Dak Prescott.

The Bulldogs are in their second week as the nation’s top-ranked team but are playing for the first time with No. 1 on their backs after sitting out last weekend following three straight wins against top-10 teams. The Wildcats took Florida to three overtimes on Sept. 13 and knocked off South Carolina at home on Oct. 4 but were completely dominated in a 41-3 loss at LSU last week – a game offensive coordinator Neal Brown is using as a teaching tool for his young team. “If we had a veteran team we may have come in and not even watched the video,” Brown told reporters. "But I think where we’re at, especially on offense, we’ve got to learn from those mistakes, or you repeat them.”

TV: 3:30 p.m. ET, CBS. LINE: Mississippi State -14

ABOUT MISSISSIPPI STATE (6-0, 3-0 SEC): Prescott had his worst game of the season Oct. 11 and the Bulldogs still beat up on then-No. 2 Auburn 38-23 thanks in part to a fearsome defensive line that forced two early turnovers. Mississippi State still has trips to top-5 teams Alabama and rival Mississippi standing in the way of an undefeated regular season, but coach Dan Mullen is not looking ahead. “Playing in the SEC gives you a bigger game every week,” Mullen told reporters. “(Kentucky) is the biggest game we have played of the season…We have to go on the road in a hostile environment and play one of the hottest and most improved teams in college football.”

ABOUT KENTUCKY (5-2, 2-2): The Wildcats put up 93 points in wins over South Carolina and Louisiana-Monroe before getting steamrolled by LSU and still have confidence they can make some noise this week. “I think because we got whooped and because we made some mental mistakes, sometimes that can shake somebody’s confidence, and we’ll see how well they respond,” coach Mark Stoops told reporters. "I have a good feeling we’ll bounce back and prepare well and play well.” Quarterback Patrick Towles needs more help from running back Jojo Kemp, who rushed for 131 yards and three TDs in the win over South Carolina but has been held to 14 yards on 10 carries the last two games.

EXTRA POINTS


1. Mississippi State has won the last five meetings in the series.

2. The Wildcats are 3-11 all-time against top-ranked opponents.

3. The Bulldogs lead the SEC in total offense at an average of 529.7 yards but are last in total defense, yielding 428.8 yards per game.

PREDICTION: Mississippi State 45, Kentucky 24
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk PF PA Home Away Grass Turf Conf
Mississippi State 6-0 W6 41.8 20.0 4-0 2-0 5-0 0-0 3-0
Kentucky 5-2 L1 31.7 21.9 5-0 0-2 5-2 0-0 2-2
Last Meeting
Mississippi State Kentucky
Date Away Home Tot Rus Pas Tot Rus Pas
10/24/13 UK 22 MSST 28 447 152 295 325 160 165
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Passing Player COMP % YDS TD INT
Mississippi State D. Prescott 67.6 268 2 0
Kentucky M. Smith 52.9 160 1 0
Rushing Player CAR YDS AVG TD
Mississippi State L. Perkins 12 65 5.4 0
Kentucky R. Sanders III 15 86 5.7 0
Receiving Player REC YDS AVG TD
Mississippi State M. Johnson 4 79 19.8 1
Kentucky R. Timmons 5 69 13.8 1
Touchdowns Player TD
Mississippi State J. Lewis 2
Kentucky J. Kemp 1
Season
Passing Player COMP % YDS TD INT
Mississippi State D. Prescott 61.5 1478 14 4
Kentucky P. Towles 61.0 1687 10 4
Rushing Player CAR YDS AVG TD
Mississippi State J. Robinson 98 689 7.0 8
Kentucky J. Kemp 60 300 5.0 4
Receiving Player REC YDS AVG TD
Mississippi State D. Wilson 18 319 17.7 6
Kentucky R. Timmons 31 339 10.9 2
Touchdowns Player TD
Mississippi State D. Prescott 9
Kentucky J. Kemp 4
Quickchart Matchup
Mississippi State Off vs  Kentucky Def
529.7 yards
354.1 yards
5.5 yards/rush
4.2 yards/rush
9.1 yards/attempt
5.6 yards/attempt
Kentucky Off vs  Mississippi State Def
415.4 yards
428.8 yards
4.6 yards/rush
3.4 yards/rush
7.4 yards/attempt
7 yards/attempt