Teleconference: Mullen Ready for ‘Christmas Morning’ Against Cowboys

This week’s game: MSU (0-0) vs. No. 13 Oklahoma State (0-0), Saturday, 2:30 p.m., ABC/ESPN2 (Bob Wischusen play-by-play, Rod Gilmore analyst, Quint Kessenich sideline)


The first SEC coaches teleconference of the season was held this morning, and MSU coach Dan Mullen had a brief segment, answering questions for just over three minutes. It’s his last media availability of the week.

Given the brevity of it, I’ll go ahead and post the whole transcript for you. Nothing newsy to report, and when I asked about suspensions, Mullen reiterated his policy of not announcing those until game day.

Opening comment:

“We’re excited about the game this Saturday. Obviously it’s a great honor for our program to be invited to play in the Texas Kickoff Classic. I know it’s very few teams get the opportunity to do this, and it really shows how far our program’s come over the last couple of years to be invited to go play against a national powerhouse team like Oklahoma State, who’s been a consistent top-10 team over the last several years. Obviously starting the season, we’re very excited to do that. We’ve been competing against each other, training, hitting each other since Jan. 1, and after nine full months here we’re ready to go play somebody else. I can’t wait to get the season under way, kick this season off. For coaches, for players, it’s almost like Christmas morning getting ready to start the football season.”

What will Friday routine be like with Houston and Southern playing a game at Reliant Stadium that night?

“It’s the same as we do for every road game. We don’t ever go to the stadiums before the games. It’s our regular Friday routine. We have lunch, we go to meetings, we go walk-throughs here, come back, shower, get on the plane, go fly, get to the hotel, have a nice dinner at the hotel, and have the best Fridays in college football for our team that we do with our schedule. I think we have the best schedule in the country for Fridays for our guys as they prepare to get ready for Saturday.”

Any suspensions for this weekend?

“We’ll announce those Saturday, if there are any.”

The matchup between Oklahoma State’s passing game and your young secondary. How do your guys look?

“It’s a great challenge for our guys. We have some young, talented players, and they’re obviously going to be tested in the secondary very, very early. Their first game coming in, there’s not much time for them to take their time, learn the ropes and figure out what game day is all about. We have a lot of guys that are going to be playing their first game for us. Jamerson Love is really the only returning corner that’s played a lot of football for us. Jay Hughes and Nickoe Whitley have played a lot at safety for us. All the other young corners, this is their first opportunity to get out there and play, and they get to go do it against the best offense in the country. It’ll be a great test for them.

“As young players, I know they’re excited for the challenge. That’s the one great thing about young guys, is they’ve been told and heard all summer that they’re the guys that have big shoes to fill, they’re the guys that don’t have the experience, they’re the guys that that’s where the mismatch is for Oklahoma State. I think young players, they really take that challenge on, and hopefully they respond to it well on Saturday.”

I am the online content coordinator for I also co-host The Memo and Prep Rally podcasts and host the Newsbreak program. Previously at the Journal, I covered Mississippi State athletics (2008-13), high schools (2004-08), and was on the copy desk (2002-04).

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