A Q&A With Curtis Virges

Mississippi State senior defensive tackle Curtis Virges talks one-on-one with Gene's Page.

You graduated in May in Chemistry. What are your future plans now that you have your degree?
"My plans are to continue in grad school. Then, when I finish grad school I will apply to dental school, actually next summer. I will apply to the dental school in Jackson, Mississippi and UAB. I have a contact at Oregon and may apply there. It's affiliated with Oregon State but it is its own school."

When you first attended Mississippi State were you majoring in chemistry?
"When I first got here I was majoring in Chemical Engineering. A high school teacher got me interested in chemistry."

How did you handle such a difficult major while playing SEC football? There is very little down time when you play football in the SEC.
"I am not a party type person. I stayed true to who I was and it worked out for me."

How tough has graduate school been for you?
"It is different because you have one class that you focus on. But you have to take everything that you learned as an undergraduate and apply it. It's a challenge."

What is it like to reflect back on all that you have accomplished during your college career?
"Some things just naturally happen. You put the work in and God blessed me with different opportunities. I just set one goal at a time and accomplished that goal. I said I wanted to graduate and I did that. Now I want to graduate grad school, then attend dental school."

You really seem very confident and comfortable with yourself. How much of that comes from football and how much from what you have accomplished academically?
"I would say more of it has come from football. Being able to do your assignments at a high speed is what has boosted my confidence."

I was the first person to graduate from a four-year school in my family. Were you the first person in your family to do that as well?
"My uncle, Charles Foster, was the first person to graduate from a four-year university. My uncle was my role model so I always strived to be better than him in every aspect of life. Since he got his four-year degree I had to obtain mine as well. He got his masters, so I have to obtain mine. He is in the military.

"My sister also graduated a year before I did."

So, I guess you learned discipline from him since he is in the military?
"I really learned discipline from football. Being accountable and being where I needed to be and the leadership that I show in the classroom, I learned all of that from football."

Your family must be proud of what you have accomplished at Mississippi State in the classroom and on the football field.
"My family is my backbone. I wouldn't be here today without them. I push myself because I don't want to feel like I am a failure to anyone in my family."

Football-wise, this season has been the greatest in Mississippi State history. How excited are you to be a part of this team, to end your college football career on such an outstanding note?
"I feel more honored than anything. There have been 114 other football teams to come through here and my 115# has been able to accomplish all of this. I never thought, during my time at State, that I would be a part of all of this. I know we have loyal fans but I don't even think that we would have this kind of season. That is one thing about making history, no one can ever take it away from you. To me, it's still like I'm living a dream."

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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