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 134 yards and three touchdowns.
Logan's take: Mississippi State again went with the trio rotation at running back but it was Ballard who made the most of his 14 carries. He is becoming a touchdown machine and is tied for the most scores nationally with 12 on the year which is as many as Anthony Dixon had all of last season. Ballard needs only four more scores the rest of the way to tie Jackie Parker's single season school record which was set in 1952. Ballard was able to break several arm tackles and it was his 54-yard run on the option that set up Chris Relf's score on the second drive.
DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK:
Cornerback Corey Broomfield
Sophomore * 5-10 * 180 * Palm Bay, Fla.
Defense: Four tackles (one solo, three assists), two interceptions - one of which he returned 27-yards for a touchdown and a pass deflection.
Logan's take: When the ball goes in the air 59 times the secondary is going to have plenty of opportunities to make interceptions. Broomfield has very good ball hawking instincts and is able to read plays before they even happen. He has cut in front of a receiver several times and caught the ball at full speed going the other way which is what happen on his touchdown just before the half on Saturday. Hopefully a game like this is what Broomfield needed after dropping a sure six-points that would have won the Auburn game earlier this season.
SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYER OF THE WEEK:
Athlete Marvin Bure
Junior * 5-8 * 190 * Vicksburg, Miss.
Special Teams: One solo tackle, one forced fumble.
Logan's take: Bure has always been one of the fastest players on the Bulldogs roster and Saturday night he was able to use that speed to his advantage. After watching Houston drive down the field and score easily on the first drive of the game, MSU's offense sputtered out of the gate and had to punt on their first possession. But Bure changed the entire momentum of the game when he blasted Cougar punt returner Patrick Edwards jarring the ball loose where Aaron Feld recovered at the 7-yard line going in to set up the first State touchdown.
FRESHMAN OF THE WEEK:
Offensive guard Gabe Jackson
Redshirt Freshman * 6-4 * 305 * Liberty, Miss.
Statistics: Jackson started at left guard and helped Mississippi State total 538 yards of offense.
Logan's take: It's hard for even a redshirt freshman to start on the offensive line at the Division-I level and much less in the Southeastern Conference. Granted, Houston's defensive front isn't exactly SEC caliber but Jackson and his o-line counterparts dominated all evening long. The Bulldogs were able to rush for 409 yards on the night which chewed up the clock and helped keep Houston's high powered offense on the sidelines.
COACH OF THE WEEK:
Running backs coach Greg Knox
Logan's take: Anytime your unit controls the game like the running backs did Saturday night you deserve credit. Knox's backs accounted for 257 yards and four touchdowns on 38 carries. This game plan was very reminiscent of what Mississippi State did last season but instead of Dixon carrying the load it was a trio of backs dividing up the carries. Ballard carried 14 times, LaDarius Perkins had 78 yards and a touchdown on 12 attempts and Robert Elliott finished with 43 yards on 11 rushes.