31 Flavors of Football: Dixon and the Grindin’ Mentality

To help you and me get through the drudgery of August, I will present in this space a daily scoop of MSU football-ness, as inspired by a certain ice cream chain. August has 31 days, so I’ll let you work it out from there. Here is today’s flavor.


On the night of Oct. 31, 2009, in Lexington, Ky., Mississippi State found its mantra, its main purpose and vision crystallized by the words of one Anthony Dixon. The tailback, a senior at the time, had just rushed for a school-record 252 yards in a 31-24 win over Kentucky. In the postgame interview with the SEC Network (CLICK HERE), the Terry native said this:

“I’m just grindin’ for my team, you know, for my state.”

If you’re an MSU fan, you are quite familiar with the concept of grindin’ as adopted by MSU athletics, especially the football team. You might even own a T-shirt that says “Grindin’ for My State.” That phrase has come to undergird every piece of philosophy held dear by MSU coaches, players and fans the past three years.

The phrase has spawned a song (you can guess the title, CLICK HERE), which I suppose means it’s far surpassed meme status. It’s become a way of life, a rallying cry, and you hear players and coaches use the word grind in its various forms all the time.

It’s kind of cool for Dixon to leave that sort of legacy, to have that sort of impact on the mentality of an entire university and fan base as they try to join the SEC’s elite.

Only one thing about this situation bugs me: Dixon ought to be getting royalty checks on every bit of Grindin’ merchandise.