September 13, 2011 8:29:00 AM
Matthew Stevens - [email protected]
STARKVILLE -- Mississippi State football coach Dan Mullen said Monday he expects senior center Quentin Saulsberry to play against No. 3 LSU at 7 p.m. Thursday (ESPN), but senior left tackle James Carmon is "day-to-day" with a left knee injury.
Mullen said Sunday both players'' injuries didn''t require surgery but weren''t available to practice Sunday night. Saulsberry left the Bulldogs'' 41-34 loss to Auburn University on Saturday with what Mullen said was a knee sprain. Neither player returned to action after they suffered the injuries.
Carmon, the starter at left tackle, was carted off the field in the second quarter after suffering what looked like to be an injury to his left knee. After the game, the 320-pound lineman was seen using crutches and wearing a large black brace on his left leg.
Blaine Clausell, one of five players suspended for the season opener last week at the University of Memphis, made his debut in the final two and a half quarters against Auburn.
"We hope they''re going to play in the game, but when you go out there and practice you get young in a hurry," Mullen said. "We have a lot of freshmen backing up on the offensive line, so we get young very, very quickly and inexperienced very quickly. When you put them all in at one time, that''s not a good thing."
Junior cornerback Corey Broomfield attended Monday''s media conference wearing a cast on his right hand after suffering a sprained thumb, but he will play Thursday night. Broomfield said he didn''t remember suffering the injury but felt the pain on the bus ride back to Starkville.
"Both of my hands are working (and) I''ll be fine," Broomfield said. "Maybe they''ll throw it my way when they see a cast. It can work in my favor."
MSU drops to No. 25 in rankings
MSU dropped nine spots but remained in the latest Associated Press poll as the No. 25 team in the country
MSU (1-1, 0-1 in SEC play) received 128 points in the week two poll released Sunday afternoon. The ranking comes one week after MSU''s highest ranking (No. 16) since it was No. 17 in the second week of the 2001 season.
Seven Southeastern Conference teams (Alabama, LSU, South Carolina, Arkansas, Florida, Auburn, and MSU) are ranked in the AP poll, the most of any league in the country.
Auburn climbed to No. 21 after its victory Saturday against MSU. The Tigers were ranked No. 23 but dropped out following a 42-38 victory against Utah State in the opening week.
The Bulldogs fell eight spots to No. 25 in the USA Today Coaches'' Poll, which is used in the formula to crown the Bowl Championship Series national champion.
LSU is No. 3 in the USA Today poll. The matchup Thursday will be the first in the series history that will feature two ranked teams.
Louisiana Tech game on ESPNU
The SEC announced Monday that ESPNU will televise the Louisiana Tech-MSU game at 6 p.m. Sept. 24.
MSU is 8-2 when its games are on ESPNU. The last meeting on that network was a 31-23 victory against Ole Miss last season.
The national cable outlet can be found on DirecTV channel 208 and Dish Network channel 141.
Pep rally at Davis Wade scheduled for Wednesday night
The MSU Student Association and Athletic Department will hold the inaugural "Cowbell Yell" pep rally in Davis Wade Stadium to kick off the home football season.
The event for the student body will take place in Davis Wade Stadium at 10 p.m. Wednesday. The festivities will include appearances from the Famous Maroon band and Mullen.
ESPN will cover the event, and cameras will film it for use in Thursday night''s game. Former MSU football players Fred Smoot and Matt Wyatt will be guest speakers. Smoot is a former All-America cornerback who started for MSU in 1999 and 2000. Wyatt played quarterback at MSU and was a four-year letterman from 1996-1999. He is the color analyst for MSU football radio broadcasts.
"When (MSU Student Association President, Rhett Hobart) came to us with the idea to host the first Cowbell Yell, we were excited about the possibility of what the event could be for this season and the potential tradition it could become in the future," MSU Director of Athletic Marketing Chad Thomas said.
Gates will open at 9:45 p.m., and students are asked to enter through gate 12 on the Northeast corner of Davis Wade Stadium. The first 600 students inside will receive a free Cowbell Yell white-out T-shirt.