Mississippi State redshirt freshman Josh Robinson celebrates after scoring a touchdown in the first half against Tennessee. (Photo by Kim Murrell, SDN)
Freshmen were making their presence felt early for the Mississippi State Bulldogs during Saturday night's game against the Tennessee Volunteers.
The 10-yard touchdown run by MSU redshirt running back Josh Robinson in the first quarter was the first of his career.
Going into the game, Robinson had only carried the football 25 times for 122 yards. He had two carries for 19 yards in the first quarter.
Also, Bulldog backup redshirt freshman quarterback Dak Prescott entered the game in the second quarter and threw his first career touchdown pass. The play went 13 yards to tight end Marcus Green with 14:17 remaining in the second quarter.
State's freshman kicker Devon Bell made his seventh and eighth field goals in-a-row in the first half. It's the longest such streak for a Bulldog kicker since Derek DePasquale made nine in-a-row from Oct. 23-Nov. 27, 2010.
The streak ended at eight because Bell missed at the end of the first half.
Another redshirt freshman who has contributed on the offensive line has been Justin Malone at right guard. He has been able to rest senior Tobias Smith at that position throughout the season.
Smith starts on OL
Columbus native Tobias Smith started at right offensive guard for the Bulldogs Saturday night and played on back-to-back series for the first time since the Auburn game.
Smith's play has been limited this season due to injury.
Johnson dresses out
MSU sophomore tight end Malcolm Johnson dressed out for the first time after missing the first five games of the season due to injury. He took part in pregame warmups.
Johnson entered the game on the first offensive series after Green made a first down catch of 29 yards.
Prior to the game Johnson tweeted, "headed to stadium. It's been a long journey but good part just starting. Thanking God for this opportunity."
Johnson had a catch of his own in the second quarter. The first-down grab went for 25 yards.
The 27 first-half points scored by Mississippi State was the most it has gotten against a Southeastern Conference opponent in a half since 1994.
That's when the Bulldogs had 28 in a half against Kentucky.
Former Mississippi State offensive lineman Jim Eidson was recognized during pregame as honorary captain for the Tennessee game.
Eidson played for the Bulldogs from 1974-75.
After his college career, Eidson spent one season with the Dallas Cowboys in 1976.
The Bulldogs wore pink socks, shoes and armbands as part of their game uniforms in observance of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Some of the players also had pink on their gloves.
The coaching staff wore pink ribbons on their shirt sleeves.
A different look
There were two differences fans noticed with the playing surface at Davis Wade Stadium Saturday night.
In the red zone from the 25-yard-line in and around the back of the end zone, the trim on the sideline was colored in maroon and white.
A faint white checkerboard look could be seen between the 45-yard-lines.
Also since the death of former MSU defensive lineman Nick Bell a couple of years ago, the hashmarks at the 36-yard line just above the Southeastern Conference emblem have been blacked out in his memory. Bell passed away due to a brain tumor.
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