The odds will be stacked against Mike Leach and the Mississippi State Bulldogs next season.
Per 247Sports, Mississippi State has the toughest schedule in college football this upcoming 2022 season. The Bulldogs are projected to play against seven ranked opponents.
MSU begins the 2022 season by hosting the Memphis Tigers. The Bulldogs then take a trip to Tucson to take on what's expected to be an improved Arizona Wildcats team. LSU (in Baton Rouge) falls next on the schedule. After an easy non-conference showing vs. Bowling Green, Mississippi State then takes on Texas A&M, Arkansas, Kentucky and Alabama, and it's not even November yet.
The Bulldogs will end the season with a four-game stretch vs. Auburn, Georgia, East Tennessee State and Ole Miss. Luckily, three of the four are home games for MSU. Still, it's going to be a long season for Leach and Co.
"No team in college football has a more treacherous October, which puts the Bulldogs’ 2022 slate at No. 1 on the outside looking in," writes Brad Crawford of 247Sports. "After opening the SEC slate in Week 3 at LSU following non-conference contests versus Memphis and Arizona, Mississippi State hosts Bowling Green before a daunting gauntlet — Texas A&M, Arkansas, at Kentucky, at Alabama. The Bulldogs hosts reigning national champion Georgia on Nov. 12 and play Ole Miss on the road on Thanksgiving. That’s incredibly difficult."
At first glance, it's tough to imagine Mississippi State making a bowl game next season. Crazier things have happened, though.
Everyone said the same thing about Sam Pittman and the Arkansas Razorbacks last season. They went on to finish the year at 9-4 overall.
Can Mississippi State shock the college football world next season?