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Misconceptions About Mississippi State

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Oklahoma City, OK -

The Bulldogs are not who you think they are.

Dan Mullen's squad hails from the SEC, but Mississippi State is, offensively, an anomaly in the tradition-rich, snap-and-pitch conference.

Gone are the days of Anthony Dixon, Chris Relf and Vick Ballard and smash mouth football in Starkville. Mullen's spread has arrived. The Bulldogs threw on exactly half of their offensive snaps last year. That was the third highest percentage in the SEC behind Arkansas and Tennessee. It was also well above the conference average of 44 percent passing versus 56 percent rushing.

To put it into perspective, Mullen's teams passed on just 32 percent of plays in 2009 and 2010, his first two seasons at MSU. Then in 2011 the passing-rushing split upped to 40-60, and again to 50-50 in 2012.

So don't expect to see the Bulldogs bring a "three-yards-and-a-cloud-of-dust" offense onto the field Saturday at Reliant Stadium.

Here's a look at the playcall percentages from each team in the SEC compared to the Big 12.

2012 SEC Offensive Splits                                    2012 Big 12 Offensive Splits

(percentage pass-rush)

Arkansas             56-44                                            Texas Tech       60-40

Tennessee          54-46                                             Oklahoma        57-43

Mississippi St       50-50                                            West Virginia   54-46

Kentucky             49-51                                             Iowa St           50-50

Texas A&M          48-52                                             Oklahoma St   49-51

Missouri              48-52                                             Texas              45-55

Georgia              43-57                                              Baylor             44-56

Ole Miss             43-57                                              TCU                 44-56

South Carolina   43-57                                              Kansas St       37-63

LSU                    40-60                                              Kansas           36-64

Vanderbilt          40-60

Auburn               37-63

Alabama            37-63

Florida               35-65

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