Gene Swindoll, Gene's Page

Mississippi State Meets Brigham Young on October 14 in Provo

The last, and only time Mississippi State played in Provo it was for a Thursday evening game in 2000. Now the Bulldogs are returning fifteen years later and again will play a week-night contest.

Mississippi State announced the October game with Brigham Young University has been reserved for Friday evening on the 14th. The kickoff time has not been set yet, likely depending on which of ESPN’s channels take the game. It will air on either the main network or on ESPN2.

This year’s game between the SEC Bulldogs and FBS independent Cougars is the first of a home-and-home set. Brigham Young is to return the trip in 2017 on October 14. The series was booked to meet the Southeastern Conference’s 2014 mandate that all league members schedule at least one non-conference game with a ‘Power 5’ league member beginning in 2016.

While BYU does not exactly meet the criteria as an independent, they are eligible for the College Football Playoff and thus can count in the SEC’s eyes as meeting the mandate.

It’s been several ‘generations’ of Bulldogs since Mississippi State visited Provo, and no current coaches were on that 2000 staff. They missed a fun evening on the west slope of the Wasatch Range. The Bulldogs took a 44-28 victory as Dicenzo Miller scored two touchdowns, one of a still-memorable short pass play he turned into a 78-yard scamper past every Cougar on the field.

Quarterback Wayne Madkin ran for a 56-yard touchdown himself and had 254 total yards offense. But it was the Dog defense trumping their teammates with three touchdowns as Ellis Wyms fell on a second-quarter fumble in the end zone; Josh Morgan returned another fumble 97 yards and required a healthy hit of oxygen afterwards; and Conner Stephens ran an interception back 36 yards.

A year later the Cougars came to Starkville, in a game delayed to post-Egg Bowl by the events of 9/11. Brigham Young took 41-38 shootout remembered best by Bulldog faithful for only one offensive holding call by the Mountain West officiating crew.

A Friday game could make it more convenient for Bulldog fans to make this trip to Provo. Those who do need to be cautioned: that 'Y' on the mountainside overlooking the town and campus? It's a lot bigger and a lot farther away than it looks from the city center. Take it from one who found out the hard way...

Mississippi State last played on a Friday in the 2011 Music City Bowl.

The full 2016 schedule as of now is:

Sept 3 South Alabama; Sept 10 South Carolina; Sept 17 @ LSU; Sept 24 @ UMass;

Oct 1 open; Oct 8 Auburn; Oct 14 @ Brigham Young; Oct 22 @ Kentucky; Oct 29 Samford;

Nov 5 Texas A&M; Nov 12 @ Alabama; Nov 19 Arkansas; Nov 26 @ Ole Miss.

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