October 14, 2012 11:50:00 AM
STARKVILLE - The Mississippi State football program wanted respect and got more of it a day after an impressive 41-31 victory over the University of Tennessee.
MSU continues to move up in both major polls released Sunday morning. The Bulldogs (6-0, 3-0 in the Southeastern Conference) are now ranked 15th in the latest Associated Press poll, its highest in-season ranking since 2000, and also 16th in the USA Today Coaches' poll.
"I think we showed Mississippi State is for real," MSU junior quarterback Tyler Russell said. "We did what we had to do."
Seven Southeastern Conference teams (University of Alabama 1, University of Florida 3, Louisiana State University 6, University of South Carolina 9, University of Georgia 13, MSU 15 and Texas A&M University 20) were a part of the first 20 teams in AP poll, which was the most of any league.
Alabama was the unanimous top choice in the AP poll garnering all 60 first place votes after defeating Missouri 42-10 in Columbia, Mo., yesterday. Defending Pac 12 Conference champion Oregon was second with Florida, Kansas State University and the University of Notre Dame rounding out the Top 5.
The Bulldogs received 591 voting points in the AP poll while receiving 671 voting points in the coaches' poll. The Bulldogs still have yet to play anybody ranked in either poll during the 2012 schedule and won't face a ranked team until they face defending national champions Alabama in two weeks in Tuscaloosa, Ala.
"We're not worried about Alabama right now," MSU senior cornerback Johnthan Banks said Saturday night after the victory over Tennessee.
All of the Dispatch MSU Sports Blog readers: feel free to follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/matthewcstevens for up-to-date Mississippi State coverage.
3. Escaping North Korea BOOK REVIEWS