STARKVILLE – No hesitation or anxiety. Not even when standing out in temperatures hovering around 100 degrees and sweat dripping profusely from his forehead.
It’s football, and junior running back Anthony Dixon is ready to hit the ground running.
“I love it,” he said moments following a team meeting late Saturday afternoon with fifth-year coach Sylvester Croom where rules and policies were delicately outlined. “I can’t wait to get out there.”
Out there, of course, being the practice field. And at 4 p.m. today, Mississippi State officially opens camp with the first of 29 practices in preparation for the season opener at Louisiana Tech on Aug. 30.
It will be a long day for the Bulldogs, one that starts at 6 a.m. with a run, followed by team meetings leading up to practice.
But for the first time for any of the 103 players reporting, they open practice coming off a successful season, one that featured an 8-5 ledger capped by a 10-3 victory against Central Florida in the Liberty Bowl.
“It’s real different,” senior All-SEC safety Derek Pegues said. “Expectations are high. Hopefully, we’ll pick up where we left off.
“As it is, though, that was last year. We’ve got to continue the success.”
For Pegues, who enjoyed great success in high school at powerhouse South Panola, the goals have shifted as he prepares for his final season at MSU.