A Quick Hitter Q&A With DL Coach David Turner

Mississippi State defensive line coach David Turner talks about the three freshmen defensive linemen.

What are your impressions of the three freshmen defensive linemen, Josh Boyd, Fletcher Cox and Johnathan McKenzie after watching them the first two days of practice?
"I'm not ready to anoint them the saviors of the defensive line but what I've seen in two days and what I've heard about them this summer in terms of how they attacked the program and worked out I'm extremely pleased. They've actually been better than I thought they would be. Those three guys, you are not going to go anywhere in the country and you aren't going to find three true freshmen that look better than them. They've got a lot of ability but it's just been two days and they haven't put pads on yet. I don't know how they are going to react when somebody hits them in the mouth or when they get mad."

What are some things you've seen that causes you to believe that?
"They are athletic. The thing that has been the most plesant surprise is how they are picking up the defense. They are learning, they are asking questions. It's not something where they are sitting there wondering what to do. There are still some things they don't know because we have thrown a lot at them in two days, and we will throw a lot more at them the next couple of weeks. But they don't act like true freshmen."

A lot has already been said about Cox and Boyd but not as much is known about McKenzie. Does he have the type ability that you want in your defensive ends
"Yeah. What we like to do is recruit those body types and see who gains weight and moves inside or stays outside. I like to use the end as the entry level position. I like to recruit about five of those guys and, hopefully, three of them get big and go inside every year. So, every year we recruit ends."

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@genespage.com.

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