"> ">


"I don't know if our players or I am more excited. We will start (Thursday) morning in sweats, take Sunday off, then practice next week and scrimmage two days."<P>

"All of our players reported. We have four players who will not be able to participate this year due to medical reasons. Clarence McDougal had a knee injury in the all-star game practice. Coco Hodge is not medically ready to participate. McKinley Scott tore an ACL three weeks ago. Also Johnny Wadley, a young man who will not be able to participate due to an ACL. He was diagnosed last year with an MCL but he really had an ACL (injury). (Dr.) Rusty (Linton), during the medicals, tested his knee. We did an MRI and he has an ACL. Will Prosser will enroll in January. We talked to Will and his father. He just turned 17. It looks like he is going to be a very good football players. What this does is give him an extra year."

Hodge and McDougal: "(Coco Hodge and Clarence McDougal) will be (at MSU this semester). Clarence will not be able to do anything physical for the next six weeks. Coco will be able to start running. Coco had a broken leg and also had some nerve damage which has caused some problems."

Johnny Wadley: "(The doctor) misdiagnosed it. Unless you are really accustomed to really big guys, it is not easy to find these injuries. We are very lucky to have (Dr.) Rusty (Linton). He is probably in the top 10% in the world."

Pig Prather: "He is fine. He could have played at the end of spring if we had been playing. He has gone through all the summer conditioning and has not missed a beat."

Richard Ball: "Richard Ball can run. He ran an electronically timed 10.2 100 meters."

Corey Brown: "He is a defensive end/outside linebacker who can run a true 4.5."

Ronald Fields: "He can run. I am kind of anxious to see him play. We evaluated him two years ago and, at that time, he weighed 260. He made tackles everywhere. He looked like he could run a 4.7 back then. To play in our defensive scheme, you have to be able to run and tackle."

Talking about competition between the new guys and the veterans: "The best guy is going to play. They know that. You are not building a football team; you are building a program. You know that you are going to have competition at your position everyday. Two years ago, when we led the nation in defense, we had two groups and they played the same number of snaps. It didn't bother the older group. In fact they relished it because it gave them time to rest."

Dorsett Davis: "(He is similar to) Randy Holloway who played at Pittsburgh. He has his ability to run. The strength that Dorsett has isn't phenomenal but the endurance that he has is. If you watch him on every snap, it doesn't matter if the ball is 20 or 30 yards down the field, he is going to go to the ball. During the summer, if you asked Mike (Grant) who was the best conditioned player, it would have been Dorsett. He is not a normal athlete."

Michael Allen: "He can give us depth (on the offensive line) because he can play guard. We will have two deep on the offensive line."

Derrick Thompson: "He is very talented. He played very well last year. He has the ability to be an outstanding player. He is not as far along as Pork Chop was at this stage, but Pork Chop had more snaps in high school as an offensive lineman."

Discussing the hype surrounding this team: "This team has won 26 games in the last three years. There are very few teams in the country that has done that. They deserve the recognition. The key to (the hype) is whether they can stay in there. We will put them in position but they have to perform. It is a lot harder to stay there than it is to get there. You work just as hard to explain things to them. And you work with them psychologically."

Talked about having every signee qualify this year: "I think that we understand and study it. I don't know if any other coach looks at the record of a kid all the way back to the first grade. We may have an advantage there."

Gene's Page Top Stories