The Golden Eagles, which open the season Saturday, Aug. 30, at Mississippi State, went in full pads for its final workout of camp and will begin transitioning into their weekly routine starting Thursday. Fall semester classes begin on Wednesday at the University and the team will be given the day off.
After spending the last three weeks concentrating solely on football, second-year coach Todd Monken understands that there will be an adjustment in his players as they will also have to tackle an academic schedule as well.
"Now it is get up, breakfast check, go to class, tutoring, study hall and practice and is a lot different," said Monken of his player new routine beginning with the start of classes. "The anxiety level of all of those classes. A lot of our freshmen have been here, but different classes. Just getting used to a routine. We are better when we are in a routine. Our freshmen took classes in the summer, but that wasn't the same. Not like the load they are going to have now."
With just 11 days out for the regular season, Monken said there are still some spots to left to settle heading into the opener against the Bulldogs.
"Offensively, we don't know yet who our tailback is," said Monken. "I am not sure who our wideouts are yet. We have so many banged up and knicked up. Also, we are trying to find guys who can process and execute when they are tired.
"We have talent at tailback and at receiver. We just have to find guys who want to play at a speed and energy level that we can count on."
One position that is settled is at starting quarterback where sophomore Nick Mullens will lead the offense after last season not knowing where he would fit into the offense his first season. Monken likes the development he has seen from his signal caller in the last year.
"First of all, he has much better strength and is more physically developed," said Monken of Mullens. "His arm talent has developed as has his accuracy and his mental part of the game. He is still not there yet, but we have had two scrimmages and he hasn't turned it over. He has been really accurate. He understands what we want to do. He has still only started six games, but is going to continue to develop and be a really good player."
Southern Miss football single game and season tickets are also available by going online at SouthernMissTickets.com, as well as calling 1-00-844-TICK (8425) or by visiting the Pat Ferlise Athletic Center weekdays from 8 a.m., until 5 p.m.
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