CoachSpeak: Ironside on Cleveland

Tolando Cleveland was a name that Mississippi State fans learned of early in the recruiting process. Bulldog supporters were delighted when Cleveland elected to spurn the home state Yellow Jackets of Georgia Tech late in the process in favor of a football future in Starkville. Hillgrove High head football coach Phillip Ironside believes the Bulldogs are getting a steal in Cleveland.

Tolando Cleveland profile

"He has been a starter for us since his sophomore season," said Ironside. "He is a great kid and a great tackler.

"He is a real low mantenance kid. He does what he is supposed to do and does a good job in the classroom."

Cleveland has great length and a frame that should serve him well as a boundary corner on the college level.

"I think he will start out at corner because of his size, but I think he could grow into a free safety," said Ironside. "He is a real physical player which is why we moved him to safety.

"Where he ends up will just depend on how he grows. He could play either spot."

A former Middle Tennessee running backs coach, Ironside believes Cleveland can be as good as he wants to be on the collegiate level.

"I look for him to have a good career out there (Mississippi State)," said Ironside. "He's a great player from a great family and he's a great kid.

"He is not the type of kid to get in trouble, so I don't believe you'll see anything like that derail him.

"He'll take care of what he needs to in the classroom and he will work hard for them.

"I am sure he'll have a solid career."

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