Center is one position Mississippi State hasn’t had to worry about for quite sometime.
Dillon Day has been a mainstay in the middle for the Bulldogs for the past three seasons and enters his senior campaign as one of the top centers in the nation.
Day has been on the Rimington Trophy watch list each of the past three years and has played in every game of his MSU career including 34 starts. He will be the unquestioned leader of the Bulldogs offensive line this season and will need to bounce back from a left arm injury that kept him out of the spring game.
The 6-foot-4, 300-pounder from West Monroe, La., has worked extremely hard to get to this point in his career. I’ve followed his progression since he was a 237-pound high school prospect with bad grades. Not only has Day put in the work in the weight room to mold his body into size, he has been a multi-year member of the SEC Academic Honor Roll and graduated this past spring. He is already working towards his master’s degree.
Day struggled early on in his career making the transition to center for the first time. He improved his snapping tremendously which was key since the Bulldogs run most of their plays out of the shotgun and pistol formations. Day has that nasty streak that you like to see out of offensive linemen but he has to watch just how far he takes that to avoid another suspension.
Archie Muniz enters his senior season as Day’s backup. The 6-foot-5, 300-pounder spent most of his career as a guard but shifted to center full-time this spring. Although the Houston, Texas native has spent most of his time as a reserve, he brings 37 games of experience to the table as well. Like Day, Muniz also graduated this spring.
When Day went down late in spring practice it wasn’t Muniz who moved up to the first team. Senior Ben Beckwith slid over from right guard to make most of the first team snaps. Should something happen to Day during the season, it will be interesting to see which route John Hevesy goes to replace him.
It appears that Devon Desper’s days at center at over, at least for the time being. Desper was signed as a center, which is where he played at Madison Central. But the 6-foot-3, 300-pounder spent all of the spring working as a guard.
I expect one of the four freshmen offensive linemen State signed in February to be a center as well.