Mississippi State’s Dan Mullen joined the rest of the league coaches on the SEC Teleconference on Wednesday.
Here is a transcript of Mullen’s time on the call:
Mullen: “Obviously it’s a big week for us this week. We’ve had a good week of practice and had a great attitude. This is always a big game as all rivalry games are. It’s fun to play in for the players and a great experience for all the fans with all the bragging rights that go along with it.
“It’s just a great time and a lot of fun. We’ve had a good week of practice and we have to continue to prepare the right way so we can find a way to win.”
If you could talk to Heisman Trophy voters, what would be your message to them about Dak Prescott?
Mullen: “So far this season I think he’s proven to be one of the best in the country. But the season is not over yet. I really don’t get into all that stuff until we’re done playing. Let’s look at the whole body of work and see how he performs this weekend and judge it from there.
“I think everybody rushes to judgment from one week to the next. One week this guy is the absolute and has got it sealed up then the next week it’s oh no, no, this guy’s got it sealed up. I think it’s better to wait until the end of the season and see what everybody does.”
What does this group of 15 seniors mean to you coach?
Mullen: “They’re pretty special. They’ve done an awful lot for us and the whole program. They’re leaving as one of the winningest senior classes in school history which is very, very, very special for what they’ve done and allowed people to change the way they think about themselves here at Mississippi State and change the expectations within our program. I couldn’t be prouder of them as a group.”
Dak Prescott was a finalist for the Davey O’Brien Award last year but isn’t this year. What was your reaction?
Mullen: “They don’t give me a vote for that stuff. Honestly, I don’t even know what criteria they even use to look at. I don’t even know who the three finalists are.”
Senior night is always emotion but for a guy like Prescott, do you have to calm him down for a situation like that?
Mullen: “I don’t know that we’ll have to calm him down. I think he’s played in so many games that he understands the situation. He’s going to have to go out there and perform for us to win. The most important thing for him is to help put the team in a position to win. That’s what he’s always done for us.
“It’ll be kind of an emotional deal for him and for everybody. He’s been such a big part of our family. But I think he’ll come out, get through all that and get back to his focus which is playing at the highest level possible.”
Arkansas’ tight ends caught five touchdown passes last week. What did you think of Hunter Henry and Jeremy Sprinkle?
Mullen: “They did a great job and are good football players. They catch the ball well and run good routes. They have a good quarterback that throws them the ball well.”
What are you going to miss most about coaching Prescott?
Mullen: “You’re just used to having the guy around. He’s been here for five years and we’ve been working together for five years. That’s a long time. Every day he has such a great attitude in everything that he does for the team.
“All of a sudden in January we’re going to go into a team meeting and it’s going to be the first time in five years that he’s not going to be in that team meeting. He’s not going to be in those offseason workouts. He’s brought so much to the program with his leadership, his attitude and work ethic of how he shows up every day and gives everything that he has. That’s going to be missed. It’ll be like a void from where he was in that spot.”