The ‘news' of the day was the return of two Dogs who'd been expected to pass on their senior seasons. Christian Holmes has opted to return, a popular decision since ‘Turtle' was a real ‘energy' guy on the squad last season. He returns as a linebacker, too, his original college position after playing around last year as a tight end for a while.
More interesting is the return of linebacker Ferlando Bohanna, who'd been announced by the head coach last October as giving up the game to protect his health after a series of concussions. Bohanna was back yesterday, and at an outside ‘backer position instead of middle. But as Coach Dan Mullen said after practice this is a closely-watched situation and whether Bohanna takes contact is yet to be decided. The Bulldogs don't put on pads until Friday.
The defensive tackle chart needs some explaining. Two first-teamers did not practice Tuesday, as both Kaleb Eulls and P.J. Jones were held out and spent their day in the rehab area. Jones was also wearing the same protective boot he sported during practices all last fall after an August injury. It didn't keep him from playing very well of course and Jones doesn't need as much spring work as younger tackles. Nor does Eulls, who moved to tackle last spring and thrived.
On the other side of the line, right guard Justin Malone reported to practice about 45 minutes after it started. He'd been in the training room as recovery from the opening-day foot injury continues. Malone did participate in a few limited drills, but also lined-up on the placekick group at the very end of practice.
So Ben Beckwith stayed at the right guard job he started 12 games last year after Malone's injury; with true soph Jamaal Clayborn the first-team left guard where Gabe Jackson operated for four years. There was some switching around on the offensive line at times, with Devon Desper—originally recruited at center—working mostly at right guard but taking some left guard snaps as well.
Maybe the most notable move was of big tight end Rufus Warren to offensive line, which as Coach Mullen said Tuesday allowed the big fellow to let his appetite loose all spring. And junior college line signee Jocquell Johnson made his practice debut as a guard, not a tackle as he'd been projected.
All of which means…not a lot. Because as spring continues the line will keep testing and trying combinations of guards, tackles, and centers. As they say, stay tuned.
Mississippi State has a 4:00 Wednesday practice, then returns for a Friday afternoon (time adjusting for the baseball game) and Saturday morning session planned.
LEFT TACKLE: Blaine Clausell, Justin Senior, Cole Carter
LEFT GUARD: Jamaal Clayborn, Kent Flowers, Jocquell Johnson
CENTER: Dillon Day, Archie Muniz, Maroon #68
RIGHT GUARD: Ben Beckwith, Devon Desper, Rodney Lacy
RIGHT TACKLE: Damien Robinson, Jake Thomas, Rufus Warren
TIGHT END: Artimas Samuel, B.J. Hammond, Lawrence Brown
SLOT TIGHT END: Malcolm Johnson, Brandon Hill, Gus Walley
WIDE RECEIVER: De'Runnya Wilson, Fred Brown, Joe Morrow
SLOT RECEIVER: Jameon Lewis, Jeremy Chappelle, Gabe Myles
WIDE RECEIVER: Robert Johnson, Fred Ross, Javous Nicks
QUARTERBACK: Dak Prescott, Damian Williams, Nick Fitzgerald, Josiah Phillips
RUNNING BACK: Josh Robinson, Nick Griffin, Ashton Shumpert, Brandon Holloway
RIGHT END: Preston Smith, Torrey Dale, White #90
RIGHT TACKLE: Chris Jones, Curtis Virges, Jordan Washington
LEFT TACKLE: Nelson Adams, Nick James, Trent Simpson
LEFT END: Ryan Brown, A.J. Jefferson, John Harris
OUTSIDE LINEBACKER: Matthew Wells, Zach Jackson, Quadry Antoine
MIDDLE LINEBACKER: Benardrick McKinney, Richie Brown, Christian Holmes
OUTSIDE LINEBACKER: Beniquez Brown, Ferlando Bohanna, Dezmond Harris
SAFETY: Kendrick Market, Deontay Evans, Jacob Wiley
SAFETY: Justin Cox, Kivon Coman, Jay Hughes, Brandon Wells, Kareem Vance
RIGHT CORNERBACK: Jamerson Love, Will Redmond, Jahmere Irvin-Sills, Broderick Oliver, Brandon Davis
LEFT CORNERBACK: Taveze Calhoun, Cedric Jiles, Tolando Cleveland, White #35
PUNT RETURN: Jameson Lewis, Will Redmond, Cedrick Jiles, Gabe Myles