In the history of Alabama football, no other opposing team has faced the Crimson Tide more often than the Mississippi State Bulldogs.

Outside of Mississippi State’s 17-12 win in Starkville in 2007, Nick Saban has owned the Bulldogs winning the last nine games in the series including a 51-3 win inside Bryant-Denny Stadium a season ago.

Despite their lack of success against Alabama, head coach Dan Mullen has led Mississippi State to seven consecutive bowl games and a No. 1 ranking during the 2014 season.

So far this season, the Bulldogs are 7-2 with a 3-2 SEC record. Last week, Mississippi State trailed 20-13 at halftime to UMass but recovered in the second half to win 34-23.

During his appearance on The Gary Harris Show, WCBI-TV sports director Robby Donoho provided an overview of Mississippi State and explained how the Bulldogs struggled to defeat the Minutemen.

“I think it was a combination of (Mississippi) State was looking ahead to Alabama because at the press conference, the only questions that Dan Mullen and the players got were about Alabama. So obviously, you’re looking ahead to the Crimson Tide, but also at the same time, UMass is a little better than a 2-6 team.” Donoho mentioned.

Even though have enjoyed a solid 2017 campaign, Donoho believes that Saturday’s game provides a chance for a young Bulldogs squad to see where they stand as a program in the SEC.

“This is sort of an opportunity for Dan Mullen and this team to really prove themselves because this year was sort of supposed to be the build-up year to next year because they don’t have a very stout and talented senior class. They’re going to be bringing back just about everyone they have on this roster from this year for next year.” Donoho said.

A Mississippi State in the series has been rare as they have defeated Alabama only 18 times out of 101 total games. While citing instances of the last handful of Bulldogs victories over the Crimson Tide, Donoho described how meaningful a victory over Alabama would be for Mississippi State.

“It would be program changing. State doesn’t beat Alabama too often and the times they do beat Alabama, those are immortalized on the jumbotron during games.” Donoho said.

In the big picture, Donoho elaborated on how their performance on Saturday could set them up for the 2018 season.

“A proving point would be to perform well against Alabama in this game to lead into the rest of the season and then hopefully roll over into next year as well.” Donoho stated.

Throughout the conversation, the WCBI-TV sports director looked at Dan Mullen’s future as a college head coach and the keys for the Bulldogs against the Crimson Tide.

Catch The Gary Harris Show every weekday from 9-11 AM on Tide 102.9/100.9 and the Tide 102.9 app.

More From Tide 100.9