After each win, BulldogBlitz recognizes several players that had outstanding performances that played a major role in Mississippi State's win. Go inside to see who publisher Logan Lowery chose as the offensive, defensive, special teams, freshman and coach of the week were.
OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK:
Running back Vick Ballard
Junior * 5-11 * 215 * Pascagoula, Miss.
Rushing: 14 carries for 103 yards, one touchdown
Logan's take: You could tell Ballard was chomping at the bit to get the football back in his hands after being forced to miss a game as a precaution with an ankle injury. Ballard said he was 85-percent for the UAB game but after taking a week off he showed no ill effects especially on his 54-yard touchdown scamper out-running the Kentucky secondary in the process. Perkins averaged 7.4 yards per attempt against the Wildcats and will likely be called upon heavily down the stretch.
DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK:
Linebacker Chris White
Senior * 6-4 * 245 * Vancleave,Miss.
Defense: 15 tackles (eight solo, seven assists), one tackle for loss and one interception return for 5-yards.
Logan's take: If you were having trouble finding the ball on Saturday night all you had to do was find No. 50 and it was somewhere near there. White nearly doubled the tackle output of any of his other teammates and also recorded the first interception of his MSU career in the process. White's performance was recognized by the Southeastern Conference being named the SEC Defensive Player of the Week.
SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYER OF THE WEEK:
Punter Heath Hutchins
Senior * 6-1 * 205 * Saltillo, Miss.
Punting: eight punts for 345 yards for a 43.1 yard average including a long of 63-yards and five inside the 20-yard line.
Logan's take: Hutchins has done an excellent job all season staying somewhat consistent but his play seemed to be even more elevated this past weekend. Kentucky's most dangerous weapon is Randall Cobb and the Bulldogs weakest link is it's kick coverage units. But Cobb returned two punts for negative-1 yard mostly due to the excellent job Hutchins did in not only distance but hang time as well allowing his team to get down the field and corral Cobb before the ball arrived.
FRESHMAN OF THE WEEK:
Safety Nickoe Whitley
Redshirt Freshman * 6-0 * 200 * Jackson, Miss.
Tackles: Two solo tackles, one interception and a quarterback hurry.
Logan's take: Whitley and his comrades gave up some yards through the air Saturday night but also made their share of plays as well. Whitley came up huge with another end zone interception on a drive that could have pulled Kentucky within a field goal in the second quarter. Whitley is still a developing player in only his first season but is really beginning to show flashes of being a solid player that will be around for years to come in Starkville.
COACH OF THE WEEK:
Defensive Line Coach and Co-Defensive Coordinator Chris Wilson
Logan's take: You can't say enough about the job Wilson's defensive line has continually done all year long. They have not racked up the sack total that some would've expected but the pressure they are forcing has been relentless. Wilson's unit compiled 19 tackles, 7.5 tackles for loss, 3.5 sacks and three quarterback hurries on the night. Wilson combined with fellow co-defensive coordinator Manny Diaz has played a major role on the on field success the Bulldogs have seen this season.