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Mississippi State sophomore defensive back Jamal Peters talks about his move to cornerback

Mississippi State sophomore Jamal Peters played safety last season. Due to injuries at cornerback, he has been moved to cornerback.

"Since the injuries (at cornerback) we had a lack of depth at corner," said Peters. "So, Coach Buckley, Coach Sirmon and Coach Mullen came to me and told me that they were going to try me at corner. I didn't think it was going to be a big thing at first because I thought I would go to corner and play there a little bit then go back to safety. But I'm not at safety now."

So far, so good for the talented sophomore.

"I actually like corner now," said Peters. "The first day at corner was kind of rough but I still think I looked good. Now, I think I have gotten much better at corner due to my technique and using my hands. And my size allows me to be very physical."

While he has always been a very physical defensive back, he has learned while playing corner that his speed is definitely good enough to play there.

"I like to be physical and compete but I have realized this week that I am quick at corner," said Peters. "I still can run a 4.4 at 221 (pounds). I am really fast but I didn't realize before that I had that kind of footwork. I don't feel like any receiver can outrun me. Even if I have bad leverage on a play I still feel like I can get to them due to my speed. And with my size and physicality I don't feel like anyone can out-physical me."

Peters, who has played safety since high school, considers the safety to be the quarterback of the defense. That has allowed him to be even more effective at corner.

"At safety, you are basically the quarterback on the defense," said Peters. "At safety, you have to learn the calls. Now, when a safety makes a call I already know it."

While he feels like he is very capable as a cornerback, he is still learning everything he can about the position from his coach and even the MSU receivers he goes against in practice everyday.

"With Coach Buck and his experience in the NFL, I listen to him a lot," said Peters. "He is a laid back coach so he will pull you aside and tell you what you are doing wrong. He stays on me hard because he feels that I have so much potential."

Receiver-wise, he learns from two of the best in the SEC, Donald Gray and Fred Ross.

"Donald Gray is who I mainly go against," said Peters. "I also go against Fred Ross. I try to go against the best. They told me that if I really lock in and take corner seriously that I could be a first rounder at it. They tell me to stay focused."

As of now, it appears corner is his position. But if the coaching staff feels he should also play safety he is still very willing to do that.

"I'm at corner now, but if Coach Mullen wants me back at safety, I'm willing to go back," said Peters. "I just want to help the defense and the team out."

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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