One of the biggest problems in college football are the preseason polls—which prevent a great team from rising to the top if it hasn’t been pre-selected to be “good” by either the mediots or the coaches. So, when the coaches preseason poll was released a few days ago, we saw the usual garbage in it: Coaches threw in three trash SEC teams at the end, just because … why not? Hype rules the day.
Meanwhile, Iowa, which won its B1G division last year, and Penn State (for example)—teams with better coaches, pedigrees, and personnel than crap programs like Kentucky, Arkansas, and Mississippi—didn’t finish in the Top 25. But we’re here to point out something even funnier: Mississippi State somehow got 19 points in the poll, placing the Bulldogs 36th among teams in the preseason poll.
That’s what Mississippi State has with Head Coach Mike Leach: token votes and a tenth-place projected finish in the mighty SEC. The only conference teams below the Bulldogs? Florida (17 points), South Carolina (5), Missouri (0), and Vanderbilt (0). The SEC has 3 teams in the Top 7, but then no other teams until No. 21 Kentucky. It’s almost as if the league was an afterthought for most coaches, until the end.
And Mississippi State was even more of an afterthought than that. We bet Florida finishes better than the Bulldogs, and probably Missouri, too, when all is said and done. But we digress: Why did Mississippi State extend Leach’s contract? We do not know. Maybe they like this kind of mediocrity, but the school is spending a lot of money on that projected outcome.
Year 3 is when a “new” coach should have his recruits mainly in place, and in the past, even that has been a mixed bag for Leach: At Texas Tech, he posted a 9-5 mark (his best to-date in that job), and at Washington State, he managed just a 3-9 record (tied for his worst there in 8 seasons). So, what will Mississippi State get? We’re guessing something along the lines of a 6-6 record, if that.
But even that would be an improvement on the 11-13 record Leach has managed so far in Starkville. We know he will just blame the players, either way, though; that’s how he rolls.
Welcome to reality, Bulldogs fans. Enjoy it …