By Logan Lowery
STARKVILLE – Nick Griffin was recruited to be the power back in Mississippi State’s backfield to compliment LaDarius Perkins the last three years.
But torn anterior cruciate ligaments in both knees have derailed the former Perry Central standout’s college career.
Now fully recovered from his second surgery in December of 2012, Griffin is hoping to make up for lost time heading into his final season with the Bulldogs.
“I’ve had a lot of reoccurring injuries but I’ve just kept persevering,” Griffin said. “I just feel real blessed to have a second chance.”
The 226-pound six-footer rushed for 2,080 yards and scored 36 touchdowns as a senior in high school, becoming one of the Magnolia State’s top prospects. Griffin redshirted his first season at MSU but tore his left ACL in the spring of 2011.
Griffin played the final five games of 2011 and appeared in all 12 regular season contests in 2012 but tore his right ACL during Gator Bowl practice. After missing the entire spring in 2013, he returned to the field for all 13 games in the fall but was limited to only 24 carries for 96 yards and a touchdown.
Griffin took first-team reps during the Bulldogs initial spring scrimmage and led the team with 74 yards and two touchdowns on 11 carries. One of Griffin’s scores came on a 52-yard jaunt showcasing his speed of old.
“It was an opportunity and once you get an opportunity you’ve got to seize it and grab a hold of it,” Griffin said. “The (defense) thought I was slow but I’m not as slow as I used to be and now they know it.”
Head coach Dan Mullen was pleased with State’s initial scrimmage inside Davis Wade Stadium last weekend but wants to see even more the second time around.
The Bulldogs will hold their second stadium scrimmage Saturday at 11:20 a.m., which will be open to the public.
“I want to see us do everything just a little bit better than we did last week,” Mullen said. “I don’t care if you’re a fifth-year senior or a redshirt freshman, you need to take a step forward in every little detail. I want to see a clean scrimmage.”