The other non-conference games in '08 are at home against Southeastern Louisiana, and at Georgia Tech.
These games fill out the full twelve-date schedule for next season, which had become an issue when Central Michigan backed out of an agreement—not a signed contract—to play at Mississippi State next fall, with a return game to CMU the next year. Then Central Michigan accepted an offer for a game at Georgia, leaving State with two openings for '08.
Fortunately State was able to both replace Central Michigan and find a 12th opponent, without having to settle for an extra I-AA team (or ‘Bowl Division' in current NCAA parlance) along with Southeastern Louisiana. I-A or ‘Championship Division' schools can count one lower-Division game each season towards bowl eligibility. With Southeastern Louisiana already on the slate that practically ruled out playing schools from local lower-Division leagues.
In 2009 State swaps Southeastern Louisiana for Houston, the first of a two-game deal with the CUSA club. That game originally had been set at Houston, per that school's information; but now has been changed to a Starkville date in '09, making it a seven-home-game slate.
2008 Bulldog Football Schedule: Aug. 30 at Louisiana Tech; Sept. 6 Southeastern Louisiana; Sept. 13 Auburn; Sept. 20 at Georgia Tech; Sept. 27 at LSU; Oct. 11 Vanderbilt; Oct. 18 at Tennessee; Oct. 25 Middle Tennesse State; Nov. 1 Kentucky; Nov. 15 at Alabama; Nov. 22 Arkansas; Nov. 28 at Ole Miss.
2009 Schedule: Sept. 5 Louisiana Tech; Sept. 12 at Auburn; Sept. 19 Georgia Tech; Sept. 26 LSU; Oct 3 at Vanderbilt; Oct. 1 Houston; Oct. 17 at Middle Tennessee State; Oct. 24 Florida; Oct. 31 at Kentucky; Nov. 14 Alabama; Nov. 21 at Arkansas; Nov. 28 Ole Miss.