"My main objective going into the spring was to get the system down, learn what I was doing and fit in as best I could."
Do you feel you accomplished that?
"Yes sir. I came out second-team on the depth chart. As far as the coaches were concerned, they said I had competed real well. I guess we will fine out in two-a-days."
You play center. I noticed you played some guard during the fall. Is that your secondary position?
"I did during the fall on the scout team, but mostly they had me at the center position. I am a true center. Like the coach said, there aren't many people that can play the center position."
Yeah, you were a center in high school. How long have you played center?
"I started playing center in the ninth grade."
What did you do during the first part of the summer?
"When I went home, one of my goals was to be in the best shape I could when I came back up here. I worked for Puckett Machinery until about 4 o'clock. I then lifted weights for two and a half hours. Then I would jump ropes for thirty minutes. I would run on the stairmaster for thirty minutes. When I came back here, I was 295 pounds and my body fat had dropped 3% to 21%."
What do you plan on doing during the second part of the summer?
"I plan on continuing everything that I did before. When I came in, we ran 16 110's. I did them fairly easily."
What are your hopes for this team this coming season?
"Last year, we didn't really know each other. Now, we have been around each other for a long time. I think we are going to shock a lot of people. We aren't going 3 and 8 again."
What are your hopes for the upcoming season?
"Right now, I'm in a backup role. I just want to be ready to play anytime I need to. Injuries on the offensive line are huge. You just never know when they might happen. I'm just going to work as hard as I can and try to be a good leader."
Chris, one thing I have noticed about the offensive linemen is you guys seem to be losing or gaining weight, whatever each of you need to do, you are doing it. Did you guys get together before school was out in the spring and talk about that. Or did you guys do that individually?
"One, everybody needs to do whatever they can to help the team. Two, if you want to be successfully as a player, you have to do the things you have to do in order to put yourself in a position to play. For me, I had to gain weight. That is what I went home and did. For some of the other guys, they had to lose weight. Everybody is looking down on the offensive line, but I can tell you everybody is working hard. There is no doubt about that."
You weigh 295 now. Do you want to gain more weight?
"I want to get up to 300."
Did the gain in weight hurt your speed?
"When I came in, I weighed about 280 and I ran a 5.35. I am now 295 and I run a 5.1."
Gene Swindoll is the owner of Gene's Page (http://mississippistate.theinsiders.com), the unofficial source for Mississippi State sports on the internet. You can contact him by email at email@example.com.