Gene Swindoll, Gene's Page

Malik Newman Preparing For Freshman Season

Mississippi State freshman point guard Malik Newman is one of the most hyped players to ever signed a basketball scholarship with Mississippi State. And he is working hard to live up to the hype.

"I want to get better and live up to the hype," said Newman. "I don't want to come in and be a disappointment to my team and to the fans. I want to come in and do what is expected of me."

One of the ways that he is working to improve himself is in the weight room.

"(The weight room) is very different," said Newman. "There are not as many racks with weights and things. Everything is really air pressure and dumb bells. It was very new to me but I think it worked out well. With the air pressure it is about positioning. You can just do whatever you need to do with whatever weight you need. It's not really taking a toll on your body. It's helping you more than it is taking a toll."

Newman also gives a lot of credit to veteran point guard I.J. Ready for helping him made the difficult job of transitioning to basketball in the SEC.

"I really respect that fact that he took me under his wing and showed me the ropes of being a point guard in the SEC," said Newman. "Every day that we come in, whether it is playing a game or on the court, we are always competing against each other. I know for a fact that he is going to give me his all and I am going to give him my all."

New head coach Ben Howland is another person who is helping Newman prepare for his first season of college basketball.

"During the recruiting process I saw Coach Howland's passion, his love for the game," said Newman. "Even by the way he speaks about the game you can see it. It wasn't like I was coming in thinking that maybe we can do this or do that. There is a good chance that we can do it. With a great coach like Coach Howland we will have a great chance of doing it."

Newman has loved every minute of his time at Mississippi State. And he knew immediately choosing Mississippi State was the right choice for him.

"From the first day I came in here I knew it was the right decision," said Newman. "I saw how much the other players want to win, so I knew for a fact that I made the right decision."

Gene Swindoll is the publisher of the website, the source for Mississippi State sports on sports network.

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