marquiss spencer mug

SPENCER

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Quarterback Tommy Stevens rushed for a career-high 96 yards.

The Bulldogs only surrendered one sack and it came on their final offensive play.

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Alabama had a 14-0 lead just 3:06 into the game.

Safety C.J. Morgan, running back Kylin Hill and wide receiver Deddrick Thomas all left the field with injuries and did not return. Morgan’s injury is season-ending.

MSU was just 3 of 12 on third- down conversions and 1 of 4 on fourth down.

Lee Autry, Willie Gay Jr., Marcus Murphy and Kwatrivous Johnson were suspended again.

Keys to Victory

(Reviewing the scouting report from our GameDay edition)

Establish the run

The Bulldogs ran the ball fairly effectively and actually out-gained the Crimson Tide 188-160 on the ground. Stevens averaged 9.6 yards per carry but Alabama held Hill to 35 yards on 16 carries although he did score State’s lone touchdown.

Get pressure on Tua

Tide quarterback Tua Tagovailoa torched the Bulldogs’ secondary, completing 14 of 18 passes for 256 yards and two touchdowns before sustaining a hip injury just before halftime that’ll cost him the remainder of the season. Mississippi State was only able to generate one sack all day.

Minimize mistakes

The first two times the Bulldogs touched the ball on Saturday resulted in blunders.

Jace Christmann’s opening kickoff traveled all of 25 yards and had an offsides penalty on top of that. Stevens also threw an interception on MSU’s first offensive play that gave Alabama the ball back inside the red zone.

MVP

DE Marquiss Spencer made five tackles (four solos) and tied his career-high with 1.5 tackles for loss. Spencer is having a solid season coming off an ACL injury that cost him all of 2018.

Bottom Line

It’s pretty simple what has to happen now. At 4-6, the Bulldogs have to beat both Abilene Christian and Ole Miss to close out the season or their nine-year bowl streak will come to an end.

Logan Lowery

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