MSU-OSU: Game week begins

A wise elder by the name of Rafiki once said it simply and strong: “It is time.”

And off he went on his journey, leading up to a battle and return to life after so much time in drought and famine.

1016961_642856372393515_508026780_nLike him, here we are, five days away from kickoff of football, with a journey to Houston in front of us after the summer months of being starved for action.

If you missed them, official game notes came out over the weekend, including a game-week depth chart. We’ll be told, I’m sure, that it’s a very fluid and ultimately unimportant thing, but it’s certainly worth looking at to see some of the battles for starting and backup positions unfold.

Mississippi State had yesterday off, as they do every Sunday, and will return to the practice field this afternoon, undertaking their final preparations for Oklahoma State.

Before that, Dan Mullen will have his now-weekly Monday press conference, answering questions both good and bad in his usual thoughtful manner.

Two somewhat-competing storylines would seem to be the main points of conversation. Can MSU slow down the Cowboys potent offense and/or can the Bulldogs keep up?

At one point in fall camp, defensive coordinator Geoff Collins yelled at his defensive linemen, “Oklahoma State won’t care if you’re tired!”

I’m pretty sure he added something about juice, too.

Both teams have spent the summer and fall preparing for each other, OSU coach Mike Gundy confessing he’d have already named a starting quarterback if he weren’t playing MSU and Mullen describing the difference in intensity and teaching during camp knowing they open with a top-20 opponent.

The BCS conference match-up is a fun one, particularly as it pits two teams who are typically so different. OSU’s high-flying offense is a bit of contrast from what MSU has done the last several years, running, running and running some more, grinding the clock and controlling the ball.

And whether or not conception is reality, SEC and Big 12 defenses are regarded, well, differently.

So, as we move forward, HailState.com will be home to a buffet of videos and stories this week in Starkville, as well as this weekend in Houston.

As mentioned, we’ll hear from Mullen and a few assistants and players this afternoon, then a few more players this evening once practice is over, and once more for both Mullen and players on Tuesday after practice. Then, they go into a relative media silence, practicing the rest of the week.

Many in the athletic department head to Houston on the bus after practice Thursday, while the team boards the plane Friday afternoon.

Oh, and if you still need somewhere to sit at Reliant Stadium, HailState.com/tickets has you covered.

Also, we had some fun on campus over the weekend with student tickets going on sale early Saturday morning and Fan Day taking place that afternoon. Check out the videos below.

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