After 2-2 start, Dogs aim higher

But after a 2-2 start to one of its roughest patches of the schedule, Mullen will certainly take the result.

“I don’t go into the season saying, ‘OK, I expect to lose games,’ ” Mullen said. “But I’m pleased with the way our team has played through this first third.”

Mullen, while he didn’t chalk up wins and losses, did divvy up the season into stretches of four games. The first third of the schedule featured heartbreak (a 17-14 loss to Auburn), breakdowns (a 29-7 loss to LSU) and domination (a 49-7 win over Memphis).