Mississippi State had never been a top-five football program before last season, so it's little surprise the unexpected ascent to No. 1 in the national rankings provided special memories.
Dan Mullen's Bulldogs began last year unranked, but that changed in late September after a 34-29 win over No. 8 LSU in Baton Rouge. A 48-31 win over No. 6 Texas A&M got the Bulldogs in the top five, and then a 38-23 win over No. 2 Auburn placed Mississippi State at the top of the polls.
Last season: 10-3 (6-2 SEC)Opener: Sept. 5 at Southern Miss (10 p.m. on Fox Sports One)Fun fact: Mississippi State trails every series against SEC West opposition except against Texas A&M, with that series deadlocked at 4-4.COMING