Gene Swindoll, Gene's Page

Mississippi State sophomore defensive tackle Braxton Hoyett is ready for an expanded role this season

Mississippi State sophomore defensive tackle Braxton Hoyett is ready for an expanded role this season.

Hoyett explained how he has improved during his first two years at Mississippi State.

"My redshirt year I came in here not knowing much, so, I had to learn a lot of things" he said. "Then, the second year I was just hoping to get on the field anyway that I could. And when I did go in I knew I was going to play hard. Being on the field, it was just a great feeling because it was my first time. This year I know that I have to play a bigger role because we have to have a lot of depth. You can't play in the SEC without a lot of depth."

He learned several things while playing in games last year that he used to help elevate his play this year.

"Last year I learned that I had to adjust to the speed of the game," said Hoyett. "You don't really know about it until you go out there and play in the game. Also, the physicality of the players increases. You learn you have to play strong on the defensive line in the SEC. You can't play soft. So, you have to give it all that you can."

He commented on how he improved his overall game.

"(To adjust to the speed of the game) you have to work on things off the field and while you are at practice," said Hoyett. "Off the field I work on my get off, hand placement and work in the weight room to get me stronger. I also realized that I had to cut my weight down. So, I did that. I am now 305 to 310. When I first got here I was 320 to 325. Now I am playing faster than I ever have."

He not only improved himself physcially but mentally as well.

"(MSU defensive line) Coach (Brian) Baker really put it in my mind to be more mental," said Hoyett. "It's not only a physical game but a mental game also. So, I envision myself before practice making plays. I have to get my assignment and technique down. I think about that before every practice."

He has several other things he hopes to improve.

"I still need to improve on my feet and my pad level," said Hoyett. "You get tired on some plays and your feet all jacked up and your pad level gets high. Coach Baker and Coach Sirmon both told me that. So, once I fix that I can make plays. I also have to work on my hand placement."

Defensive-wise, he has been very impressed with what he has seen from the overall defense.

"We played together," said Hoyett. "Everybody picks each other up when we are down. We all celebrate when someone makes a big play. We also take coaching from anybody."


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@maxxsouth.net.


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