"I'm about 285 right now. I've gotten in the weight room a little more and gained some weight. People actually ask me if I lost weight, but I've gained."
We have you running a 5.2 in the 40. Is that the same?
"I ran that one time, but usually it's a 5.3 or somewhere around there."
OK. I read somewhere that you had gotten some award in Alabama. What that the Player of the Year or something like that?
"No, sir. I wasn't the player of the year. In Alabama, they have the Mr. Football Banquet and they have a Lineman of the Year award in each class and in AISA, and I won that award this year."
Congratulations on the award. Thats a big honor.
"Yeah, it was nice. But it was just nice to get to go up there and see the other players like Jamarcus Russell."
So, you must have had a good year then?
"Yes, sir. And I went to the All-Star game a couple of weeks ago and I got Most Valuable Defensive Player playing defensive line."
So, you play defensive line too?
What did you do in that game to get that award?
"I don't really know. They threw the ball a lot, and I guess I made a few tackles. I don't really know who voted for me to win it. But I guess I did pretty good."
Congratulations on that award too. On the season, did they grade you guys out or anything?
"No, not really. We didn't keep up with grading or pancake blocks or anything. They said I had 93 tackles on the defensive line but I'm not real sure about that. When they announced that I had won that award, they said I had 93 tackles though."
Are you looking forward to signing on the dotted line?
"Yeah, I am. I know there is a lot to moving from high school to college, but I'm looking forward to just going to college and being a part of it all."
Do you project to be a tackle or guard?
"I played tackle all through high school but if they want me to play guard then I'll play that."
Are you still firmly committed to Mississippi State?
"Oh, yes sir."
And Coach (Curley) Hallman is recruiting you?
What do you know about Mississippi State?
"I know they haven't done that well the past few years and I know they have had some coaches that got fired. But I know that Jackie Sherrill has been the only one who has been able to win there. And I know they had a good recruiting class last year. And I think it was like three years ago that they finished ranked real high. I really like coach Hallman, so thats still where I'm going."
Do you know any players there?
"No, not really. I went to a bunch of games so I would know most of them when I saw them."
Have you gone on any official visits yet?
"No, not yet. I missed some of coach Hallman's phone calls the last couple of weeks so he might be trying to set one up."
Are you still getting calls from other schools?
"Yes sir. I'm getting calls from Southern Miss and Troy State But once I told them that I was committed to Mississippi State, they kind of cut down on the calling. Now they probably call once every three weeks or so."
What do they just call and ask if you have changed your mind or something?
"When the coaches got fired, some of the coaches from other schools called to see if I knew about it yet. But they really just call to keep in touch with me I guess."
So they called after the coaching change and said....
"No, don't think I'm bad mouthing any of them. I don't want you to think that. They did not bad mouth anybody, they just called to see if I knew about it and to check on me."
Well, that's normal stuff, it's not negative. If I were a coach I would do the same thing. But getting back to the coaching change - what do you think about State now?
"Really, they played a lot of freshmen last year and I know they've been down, but they had a good recruiting class so I think everything will be alright."
Is early playing time something that attracted you to MSU?
"No, not really. I wasn't told I was going to get early playing time. Some guys think they are going to get early playing time and end up not playing much at all. So no, I'm just going to go in and get in the weight room, get stronger, work hard and see how things play out."
I've heard that to be a really good offensive lineman, that you need to have a mean streak. Do you have a mean streak on the field, because you seem like such a nice guy.
"I guess I have a mean streak on the field. I try to be a nice guy off the field, but I guess I do. I know it's not a pretty position to play, so I think I have a mean streak."
What have the coaches told you about your strengths as an offensive lineman?
"They told me I was fairly quick for a big man and I have good flexibility. They like that at Mississippi State. They think it's easier to find linemen who can put on a little weight than take it off. So that's good."
I really appreciate your time and the interview.
"OK. I'll see you."
Brent Bozeman is a correspondent for Gene's Page. He can be reached by email at email@example.com .