CoachSpeak: Michael Story

Coach Chad Cook knows an SEC player when he sees one. After a career in the nation's toughest conference at Ole Miss, Cook is seeing one of his players head on to the big time as Michael Story is set to enroll at Mississippi State. Story joins a 27 man class that already holds the pledges of some of the state's top talent.

Michael Story profile

Story enters the Bulldog football program as a 6-5 17 year old freshman who will take part in spring practice this semester as a collegian. A high school December graduate, Story was the youngest member of his senior class at Ripley High School.

"I guess you could say that he's pretty much being recruited as a junior," Coach Chad Cook explained. "He already has good size and he has the body to play in the SEC. He might be a couple of years away, because he will need to get stronger, but he's got a lot of potential."

Story played multiple positions during his high school career, but his now former coach sees him as an interior offensive lineman.

"I think he'll end up playing guard," Cook said. "He was actually our back up center too, but we didn't have to play him there. I think playing guard suits him more. We played him at guard his sophomore and junior year, but we ended up losing our left tackle. Big Mike was by far our most athletic lineman, so we had to put him at left tackle.

Mississippi State offensive line coach and running game coordinator John Hevesy will not have to push Story to find his mean streak, he already has it.

"I have to really credit my OL guy, Coach Sam Hathorn," Cook said. "He was on the All-Decade team at UNA (North Alabama) and he's just 26. It hasn't been that long ago that he played and he was able to work with Mike and he's brought him a long way.

"From where Big Mike started and to where he is at now in just two and a half years is probably the biggest jump that I have seen a lineman make.

"You know you have to have the height and the weight for college coaches to come and look at you, but the progress that he has made is a credit to Big Mike and the type of kid he is and Coach Hathorn for getting it out of him.

"Big Mike is not going to stop until he hears the whistle and that's what you want. He does it in the right way too. He's not out there hitting people in the back. He noses you up until the whistle blows.

"I think that's the main thing that has attracted people here to see him. He plays mean and physical, but he does it in the right way."

Story is a bit of a late bloomer despite being an early enrollment guy and that combination has served him well as the Bulldogs looked to bolster their roster with some mid year enrollments to partake in the spring practice sessions and work towards the 2015 season.

"This year he really progressed," explained Cook. "You could really see it in the past six or seven games. Early on last year, he was just big and he didn't play mean. Now I feel pretty certain that he is going to be a good one. I really do."

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