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Mississippi State head football coach Dan Mullen
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Courtesy: hailstate.com

Mullen Addresses Media In Weekly Press Conference

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August 27, 2012
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STARKVILLE, Miss. - Mississippi State head football coach Dan Mullen holds his weekly press conference Monday afternoon in the Bryan Athletic Administration Building. Free on-demand video of each week's press conference will be posted in the story rotation (main and football pages only) on HailState.com.

 

Dan Mullen Press Conference Transcript - 8/27/12

 

Opening Statement
“We are really excited for the start of the season. This is what we work all for year—these 13, hopefully 14 opportunities for us to go play games. I can’t wait, and I know that our guys are fired up and ready to get out there and go play Jackson State. I think it’s a really fun rivalry for people in our state. There is a passionate fan base on both sides. They have a great program, and looking at their team I would be shocked if they didn’t win a SWAC championship this year. I think that it will be a whole lot of fun for everybody. A lot of these guys have played against each other, and the fans know guys from both teams, so it makes it a really fun game for us.  They’re a really tough team looking on the defensive side. They’ve got nine seniors and two junior starters—a lot of experience on that side of the ball. They have a big defensive line and some skill on the perimeter. They’ve also got all-conference pass-rushing guys. Offensively, they have a very experienced offensive line. They have a junior on the offensive line, a guy that actually played here a couple of years ago. So, I know that they have that experience right there.  They have some great skill matchups; really skilled players, along with some big guys that are tough matchups. They also have speedy guys in the perimeter lines—they love to throw all over the place.  Looking at who we expect to play quarterback for them, the Moore kid played at the Division 1 level in big stadiums and big games. That experience makes him ready to come out and play hard. A lot of these kids have been up here and played in this environment, so they have the experience of playing here and they have an experienced team that is expected to win a championship. I expect it to be a great, fun matchup for everyone in our state. It should also be a good challenge for us in game one. I know our guys are ready for that challenge and are ready to get out on the field and hit somebody else.”

 

 On Brandon Heavens…

“It’s just a balance of getting the guys on the field when you have five senior wide receivers. We have to get opportunities to get them on the field. He is one of our fastest, if not our fastest, wide out. He gives that deep threat going on the outside that he can vertically stretch the field with his speed. I think that his experience makes it a very easy adjustment for him because he’s played a lot of football. He knows all of the positions. We could easily move him back to an inside role if we have to, but it gives him an opportunity to get on the field.”

On Benardrick McKinney…

“I think it’s a very close race with him and Ferlando Bohanna. I see Benardrick starting, but when you get in the end of the game and you count reps, it’s not going to be as separated as other positions. A couple of years ago we had Chris (White), K.J. (Wright)—guys who were on the field all of the time. I think Benardrick has done a good job of making plays and being a big player. He’s had a great off season. His demeanor and his mindset at practice every day has been fantastic.  I think he just has the slight edge. I don’t think anybody has lost a position—I just think that he worked really hard to gain that position. But when we get in there on Saturday, we’re just going to let both guys play a bunch.”

 

On Damien Robinson…

“I think he’s picked it up. I think he’s had a good offseason and up until now. He’s put on about 18 pounds. I think he’s gotten used to knowing what it is going to be like to play against SEC guys through practice. I do see both of those guys (Robinson and Charles Siddoway) playing in that position with significant reps in the first game to get that experience under their belt. One thing I’ve always done is force guys onto the field no matter the situation to gain them experience so that they can be prepared for the long season. In game one I want to give everybody the opportunity to get out there to show what they can in live game situations.”

 

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