Freshmen Show Potential for the Future

Most of the Mississippi State football freshmen, with a few veterans sprinkled in, ran sixteen 110s after their weightlifting workout Monday afternoon. There is not only a time limit for each run, but they also have a limited number of seconds to rest in between each run. Although a few of them had some difficulty making all their times, most of them were very impressive.

True freshman defensive end Quinton Wesley, all 255 pounds of him, was extremely impressive and easily made all his times. He doesn't know what jog means, folks. If you want me to give him a letter grade, I'll give him an A, maybe even an A+. He's already a warrior in the running drills. If his conditioning is any indication of his mental toughness, then MSU's coaches may have struck gold with this guy.

Jarvis Kyles, a defensive back, also was very impressive, as was quarterback Tray Rutland. Like Wesley, both are warriors. And Jarvis has to be one of the most intense looking guys that I have ever seen. Both easily made their times and were the leaders of the pack in their group. Another true freshman quarterback, Ty Evans, gave Tray all he could handle. Ty showed a great competitive spirit. Defensive end Charles Burns also stood out while running next to Wesley. Although he couldn't keep up with him, he was never far behind. Another youngster, wide receiver Adron Chambers, seemed to get better with each run. Adron ran alongside veteran defensive back Marcus Evans during the runs and kept up with him for the most part. Two other freshmen also showed great conditioning as well, linebacker Jimmy Miller and punter Blake McAdams. Both made their times on all 16 of the 110s. There's no doubt both have worked hard this summer.

Fullback Brandon Hart also stood out, but missed a couple of runs to rest a sore leg. And let's not forget the walk-ons that were running. Three that stood out were snapper Eric Etheredge (he's from somewhere in Alabama), linebacker Mark Brown from Madison Central High School in Madison, Mississippi and defensive back Thomas McGee from Washington School in Greenville, Mississippi. All three made all their times.

Behind those guys were freshmen offensive linemen Johnny Carpenter and Chris Spencer. Both started out strong and were making their times, but then started feeling the impact of carrying 277 and 300 pounds. Both showed great potential, though.

Offensive lineman Craig Jenkins showed effort and never quit, but he's behind in his conditioning due to the excess weight. TE/DE Michael Gates isn't carrying excess weight, but it's obvious he's a little behind in his conditioning, but, like Craig, he never quit.

Two skilled position guys, wide receivers Aubrey Bell and Tay Bowser, did well early on and showed good effort later in the runs when it was obvious they were getting tired. Whilel they have some work to do before they are in the condition they need to be, they both showed good effort.

The two veterans in the bunch, Marcus Evans and offensive linemen Dio Herrera, were A+ guys, maybe even A++. Both easily made their times. If the rest of the MSU veterans are in the same kind of shape those two are, then Mississippi State won't be losing games in the 4th quarter due to fatigue. Plus, Herrera is already showing leadership ability. He ran beside Carpenter and Spencer encouraging them to run as hard as they could. And they responded as best they could. Folks, it's hard to believe how well Dio runs, especially considering he's about 300 pounds. And he carries that weight extremely well. His build reminds you a little of former Bulldog and current NFL offensive lineman Randy Thomas. He'll give Chris McNeil, a conditioning warrior if there ever was one, a run for his money in the running drills this year.

Watching these guys run would give any Mississippi State Bulldog fan tremendous hope for the future of MSU football.

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

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