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Bell Yeah Links! 8.19.11

Football draws near. Let's do this.

Vick Ballard is quietly one of the SEC's best - College Football Nation Blog - ESPN

ESPN's Edward Aschoff profiles a low-key Vick Ballard

But as Ballard begins his final season in Starkville, he’s noticing that while he isn’t the most talked about running back, his name does come up in more conversations here and there. That’s refreshing, but it can also be a danger. Ballard doesn’t want to get caught up celebrating the hype and forgetting his focus.

"I’m self-motivated, man," Ballard said. "When you have a lot of people talking to you, it’s hard to stay humble. I try not to let it get to me and just stay self-motivated and let everything handle itself. "In this league everybody’s big everybody’s fast. You get better in your head the mental aspect of the game. My coach always said the smarter you are the better you are." 

IHL approves exterior design of new MSU football facility | The SDN's Bulldog Blog

The new facility, which construction is schedule to begin in September, will have space for numerous football related activities including a sports medicine complex,football offices and a locker room just to name a few. The 80,000 square foot facility will cut the football program down to two buildings instead of the six they are currently using. Scheduled to be finished by December 2012, the new facility will be located between the Palmeiro Center and the practice football fields. - Practice Report: More comfortable Mullen

Here's a practice report from BDJ. Tomorrow, the Bulldogs are holding the last scrimmage of fall camp before they begin preparing for Memphis.

The head coach was in a good mood because his team held their final preparations before their final scrimmage of the fall, a scrimmage that he has high expectations for. "Yeah, the last two days we took off the full pads," Mullen said. "Even though we're always still pretty physical, that's just the type of team we are. But hopefully I want to see some great performances tomorrow." Mullen Setting Stage For Friday Scrimmage ($)

More from Gene's Page on yesterday's practice. 

As for Thursday’s practice, "Just a lot of situational," Mullen reported. "We’re going to have a big scrimmage tomorrow so everything today was pretty set situation instead of more scrimmage/game-like. Second down situations, third down situations, red zone situations, a lot more of that stuff. And a little bit more fundamental work to get ready for tomorrow night."

Dogs fully embrace hybrid craze | The Clarion-Ledger |

Brandon Marcello looks at how the Dogs utilize their versatile players in different positions. 

At State, the same can be said: receiver Chad Bumphis is a Wildcat quarterback and running back LaDarius Perkins routinely lines up at slot receiver. The two-for-one (sometimes three-for-one) traits are discovered on film and, in most cases, the coaches react on instinct on recruiting trips. Versatility is important, Mullen said.

Playing multiple positions creates mismatches as seen with Bumphis, a speedster and leading receiver who "could play quarterback," Mullen said. And the Tupelo native is not just a threat running the ball like last year in the Wildcat formation.

Alabama, LSU, South Carolina headline 2011 SEC conference report - NCAA Football -

Andy Staples goes all Nostradamus and predicts how the SEC will shake out. Staples has Mississippi State going 9-3 overall and 5-3 in conference. He also has Ole Miss with a 1-7 conference mark. Just sayin'...

BCS Conference Poll Update!! - Phil Steele

On the other hand, Phil Steele's "confidence poll" (which this is based solely on fan voting), has Mississippi State going 3-5 in conference. 

Three Under-The-Radar Players Who Will Come Up Big In SEC West | Saturday Down South

Saturday Down South gives Vick Ballard more love. 

Vick Ballard is the leading returning scorer in the SEC this season. That’s all he did last year was score touchdowns. He finished just shy of the elusive 1,000 yard mark; however, all the skill position players, namely quarterback Chris Relf, are back and ready to help Ballard carry the load. Even though he had a great year last year, Ballard still flies under the radar in Starkville, but he has all the athleticism, tools and vision to be a big-time player this year for State.

MaxPreps' 2011 high school football kickoff guide - MaxPreps News

Finally, MaxPreps has a wealth of information for you recruiting gurus. It lists everything from out-of-state games of the year (South Panola at Hoover, Ala., checks in at No. 6) to the nation's top freshmen (Dontae Jones of Louisville, Miss., makes the list). There is enough good biscuits and tidbits to have you fully ready for high school football.