August 11, 2010

Mullen pleased with youngsters progression

Mississippi State got another break from the heat and humidity Wednesday morning and proceeded to have a solid practice.

Head coach Dan Mullen was thoroughly pleased with the efforts of several underclassmen and is starting to see some development from some of the key members of the 2009 signing class.

"It was good," Mullen said. "It wasn't that hot out there I don't think today so we got some good work in so the heat wasn't a factor. We worked hard and I was pleased to see some of the guys starting to see some development a little bit better. Johnthan Banks and Nickoe Whitley, guys that we are depending on but who are still young guys, are starting to see some strides out of those two guys. They were pleasing. We cleaned up some red zone work this morning. We still need to clean that up offensively but it was better today than it was yesterday."

Banks earned Freshman All-SEC honors last season while Whitley along with linebacker redshirted their rookie year in Starkville. Mullen praised the work of all three following Wednesday morning's practice.

"You just see them growing as players in the speed in which they play the game," Mullen said. "On special teams you see them mentally always in the right position. They are doing it as football players now whereas before a lot of times they were doing it as athletes. [db]Deontae Skinner is another guy you are starting to see become a football player and not just a guy with a lot of potential. We're starting to see him make some plays."

Mullen is still holding off a big longer in organizing his depth chart for the season opener against Memphis. He will instead wait a few more practices before beginning to sort things out.

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