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Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Gene Chizik press conference: LIVE!

I'll be live blogging Gene Chizik's press conference at 11:30 a.m. CT. Here are the fine points, of course, in bullet form:
  • "We've learned a lot about our football team. But we've got so much room for improvement."
  • On Mississippi State: "They're a talented football team. It's a team that's extremely high energy and is playing really hard for Dan."
  • "We know where we are, which is a good thing. Because a week ago we didn't."
  • "I don't think so. I don't think we're any further behind than we thought, or really further ahead. We were hoping to be somewhere in this area. We've identified what we're not very good at. But we've got a great starting point. That's what we feel best about."
  • MSU has two good quarterbacks. Two different guys. One's a runner. One is less so. He thinks there is obviously some carryover from Florida. He also thinks there are some similarities in MSU's offense to Gus Malzahn's.
  • "I think we're always looking for guys who can help us and take a load of some guys. We feel like we've got some guys who are on the right track who can run the football, but we're always in the market for more. The more the merrier." Chizik said it's going to be a long year with no byes until November, so two or three tailbacks are necessary to get through the season.
  • Chizik likes Kodi Burns' dual threat nature in the Wildcat. "It poses problems for defenses if you've got a two-dimensional guy back there."
  • RB Eric Smith will be back on the team this week. He has been away from the team since being arrested for third-degree assault last month. "You're going to see him in a uniform this week. And we've done what we asked him to do." Smith was back at practice last night, Chizik said. "I think it's great for our football team to welcome him back," Chizik said. "And let's move on."
  • Asked if Auburn will expand its offense against Mississippi State, Chizik responded, "You've got to come to the game Saturday to find out. We've got a lot of offense in, but there will be more."
  • Chizik hopes LB Eltoro Freeman will be able to play. "We'll play it day-by-day."

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