By Scott Crumbly
SEC Digital Network
HOUSTON, Texas – Mississippi State took the field at Reliant Stadium in Houston to square off with Oklahoma State on Saturday afternoon, and the Bulldogs were unable to come away with a victory in their season opener. MSU (0-1) took an early lead on the strength of a field goal, but the Cowboys rallied to seize control and claim a 21-3 victory.
LaDarius Perkins paced the Bulldogs in the early going, helping MSU sustain a 13-play, 57-yard drive that led to a 40-yard field goal from Devon Bell. Oklahoma State got on the board late in the second quarter when J.W. Walsh found the end zone on a 3-yard run, and the Cowboys never relinquished the lead.
Walsh and Jeremy Smith each crossed the 100-yard mark on the afternoon, with Walsh leading all rushers with 125 yards on 13 carries. Smith managed 1-2 yards and two scores on 15 carries, and the Cowboys won the rushing battle 206 yards to 111 for MSU.
Tyler Russell completed 10 of his 16 throws for 133 yards, but was picked off once. Walsh threw for 135 yards for OSU in addition to his production on the ground.
Perkins finished the game with 50 yards on 16 attempts, while Josh Robinson carried eight times for 48 yards. Penalties plagued Mississippi State, which was flagged 11 times for a total of 75 yards.
Passing – Tyler Russell, 10-for-16, 133 yards, INT
Rushing – LaDarius Perkins, 16 carries, 50 yards
Receiving – Jameon Lewis, 5 rec, 55 yards
Passing – J.W. Walsh, 18-for-27, 135 yards
Rushing – J.W. Walsh, 13 car, 125 yards, TD
Receiving – Josh Stewart, 4 rec, 39 yards
• Prior to Saturday’s loss, MSU head coach Dan Mullen was 4-0 in season-opening contests.
• The matchup with Oklahoma State marked the 31st time that MSU had opened the season against a team currently in a BCS conference. The Bulldogs are 11-20 in those contests.
• Mississippi State is now 13-12-1 all-time when playing in the state of Texas.