STARKVILLE, Miss. (AP) – Kamryn Pettway ran for 169 yards and three touchdowns, Sean White threw for 204 yards and a touchdown and Auburn cruised to a 38-14 win over Mississippi State on Saturday.
The 6-foot, 240-pound Pettway was dominant for the Tigers, running around and through Mississippi State’s defense as Auburn built a 35-0 halftime lead. The sophomore thrived even with a huge workload, carrying the ball 27 times for 125 yards and three touchdowns in the first half. He finished with 39 carries.
Pettway’s role was increased after starting running back Kerryon Johnson suffered a right leg injury in the first quarter and didn’t return.
Auburn (4-2, 2-1 Southeastern Conference) has won three straight.
Never miss a local story.
Mississippi State (2-3, 1-2) actually had a little momentum in the game’s opening minutes when Kivon Coman intercepted a deflected pass to give the Bulldogs’ great field position at the Auburn 19. But five plays later, Westin Graves missed a 28-yard field goal.
It only got worse for Mississippi State.
Auburn scored touchdowns on five of its next seven drives to take control of the game. By late in the second quarter, boos could be heard from the home crowd as Mississippi State’s listless offense took the field.
Auburn: The Tigers showed they might be a factor in the SEC Western Division race after an impressive win. Even after Johnson’s injury early in the game, Pettway was able to anchor the running game. White might not be flashy at quarterback, but he’s consistent and makes good decisions.
Mississippi State: The Bulldogs’ streak of making the postseason in six straight seasons appears to be in serious jeopardy. The offense doesn’t have many playmakers and the defense was overwhelmed by Auburn’s power running game.
Auburn: The Tigers received 46 votes in last week’s rankings and could jump into the top 25 after an impressive road SEC win.
Auburn: The Tigers get a week off to rest before a home game against Arkansas on Oct. 22.
Mississippi State: The Bulldogs have a quick turnaround, travelling to face BYU in a non-conference on Friday.
Follow David Brandt on Twitter: www.twitter.com/davidbrandtAP . AP College Football website: www.collegefootball.ap.org .