GPTV: Murray-Robertson Talk MSU Football

GPTV: Gene's Page's Steve Robertson and David Murray talk Mississippi State football.

David Murray - "Well Steve, Mississippi State is wrapping up two-a-days today. They are practicing right now. Now (I know that) it is indoors but that says a lot about the faith that Dan Mullen has in the conditioning, the shape, the durability of this team that they are going to go through drills in Palmeiro, then tonight put them on Scout Field and let them go at it. Steve, I know you have talked to some of the defensive guys and offensive guys as well. And they really do want to get after it."
Steve Robertson - "Yeah, they are ready to go. And as you heard yesterday, David, it has been a great fall camp. Yesterday was one of the best practices that we have had this fall. Class is beginning soon. This gives them a chance to wrap up their farm days. And for many of them, like Dak Prescott, their last farm day (practices) was yesterday. As a result, things are now about to get serious. It is no longer about conditioning and installment. They are now starting to get ready to figure out who is going to play and who isn't, kind of put the depth chart in order and get ready to go play Southern Miss."

David Murray - "It was interesting when Dan Mullen talked to us on Monday, the last time we had the chance to speak to him, he said they had gone three straight two-a-days but still had some installation left. And judging from past experience what we have seen from Mississippi State scrimmages in the fall when we do get to watch them and talk to coaches and players afterwards how much do you think this scrimmage will be about getting veterans ready and how much of it do you think will be able evaluating, judging the freshmen and sophomores, the backups? I think they probably feel pretty good about their first teamers."
Steve Robertson - "I don't think there is any question about that. It is kind of like what Coach David Turner told us yesterday, they are going to figure some things out. The defensive tackle rotation is probably one of the areas of concern as we prepare for the stretch run (leading up to) the season opener. You feel great about Chris Jones and Nick James. You probably feel better about them now than you did a week ago just because of the comments that the coaches have made. Who plays behind them, who gives them a break when they need it? That is a big question mark, especially in a run-first league like the SEC where you have to be strong in the middle. And I think that is a big question mark as we head into camp next week."

David Murray - "During interviews with players and coaches this week some of the take-a-ways have been the confidence so many Bulldogs are showing. And not just the seniors. You would expect those guys who have played in and won a lot of SEC games, played in bowl games, to have confidence going into the season. I think that is rubbing off on a lot of guys who didn't play a lot of snaps or play at all last year, or, in some cases, are entirely new to the programs. I sense, and I want your opinion on this too, the confidences that everybody is showing in this program."
Steve Robertson - "Aeris Williams is a guy who didn't play a snap last year and he walks to the podium and talks like a salty veteran. He is ready to go. I think that says a lot about the caliber of players that Mississippi State has recruited over the course of the last few years. These guys have come in, bought in and prepared, but they didn't just show up and learn all these attributes in Starkville. They brought a lot of that with them. And as a result you see, based on what happened last year, these guys think that if they buy in and do what the coaches ask we can do some great things. And you hear that echoed almost to a man about being picked 6th or 7th. They picked us 5th or 6th last and see what happened. I think that chip on their shoulder has given them some extra motivation this fall."

David Murray - "Another thing that has stood about camp, and it did to me during the days when media was allowed to watch practices, watching the Bulldogs run around, make their plays, I'm not going to say that all of them are top notch players, but I think for the first time, certainly in my experience, and let's not get into how long that has been, that we have a roster where every player that I saw on the field looks like he belongs on an SEC practice field physically. That's not just a comment on what Coach Court has done in his conditioning and strength program. I think it is a comment on the recruiting that Dan Mullen has done not only in the last couple of years but over five, six and now seven years of bringing in quality athletes. Now, when you run that scrub team out there they look like athletes who can play in their own right."
Steve Robertson - "You are recruiting to a standard now. When Dan Mullen first got here guys were kind of buying into a dream, a promise, an expectation. Now, you have proven that you can win here, you have proven that you can do some good things. As a result, the caliber of players that you attract is greater. State can be a little bit pickier. They can go get those guys who are more prototypical SEC size. They can bring them in and add the mass needed to handle the rigors of the SEC. In years past you almost had to take whoever was left over. If you were a little weak in your state you had to go next door and kind of get a guy that Alabama and Auburn didn't want. Now you are competing head to head against Auburn and Alabama for players in their home state that they are very interested in."

David Murray - "So, Mississippi State wraps up two-a-days and farm camp today. They will be leaving the farm. Que the Little Feat reference. I know, 70s music fan. But they will be leaving that and starting classes pretty quickly. They will start one-a-days again pretty quickly. Coach Dan Mullen will next speak with media Saturday at about 5 o'clock. So, we will have an update on on what he had to say, impressions from the both scrimmage and what his overall opinion of how two-a-days have been. It is time for the Bulldogs to begin buckling down and making plans for the season. There will be more installation practices. And special teams will get a lot of more attention in the coming weeks. But we are a transition point now where it is about to go from down on the farm to back on the practice field, back in school and getting ready for the 2015 season. So, for Steve Robertson and Gene Swindoll this is David Murray of and saying summer is running out fast and football season is not far away."

Gene Swindoll is the publisher of the website, the source for Mississippi State sports on sports network. You can contact him by emailing

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