A Q&A With MSU Recruiting Coord. Tony Hughes

Mississippi State football recruiting coordinator Tony Hughes talks about this time of year during the recruiting season.

What are the last three to four weeks of the recruiting season like for coaches?
"Very, very, very intense. You take nothing for granted, even kids that may have been committed to you for six months, a year or even a year and a half. You don't take it for granted that they are still coming to Mississippi State. You have to recruit those kids just as hard, just as if they aren't committed to you or like it's the very first day you talked to them. If you take kids for granted, those are the kids you could end up losing. on signing day. So, you have to be full force, all out with the same intensity that you started with on day one."

Do you always have a backup plan in case a player decides to go elsewhere? And if so, how long have you had it developed?
"It's long developed. You have your recruiting lists and you have the guys that you have offered and have recruited all along."

Has it been a little more intense this year than in years past?
"The last few weeks have. It's really intense this year. "

Why do you think that is?
"The competition factor with us having success on the field. Your competition looks at that and says if we are going to catch up then we have to out-recruit them. That's always the plan if you don't have as good of a record. You have to pick up the intensity recruiting-wise. You think that the only way you are going to get better is to get better players. If there is a team that is on top, then the team that didn't do well is more intense on recruiting. It's not that you are less intense but they are probably more intense than they would normally be because they've had more time to spend on it (since they didn't have bowl practices)."

When do you really start seeing the effects of the 9-4 season and the big bowl victory? Will it be moreso with the 2012 class than the 2011 class?
"It's hard to say really, but you would hope that it would be in this current class."

Gene Swindoll is the publisher of the GenesPage.com website, the source for Mississippi State sports on Scout.com sports network. You can contact him by emailing swindoll@genespage.com.

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