|BGSU football noter: Mullen still fond of BGSU (10-8-13)|
|Written by By JACK CARLE, Sentinel Sports Editor|
|Tuesday, 08 October 2013 06:06|
Dan Mullen has fond memories of his two years in Bowling Green.
Now in his fifth year as the head football coach at Mississippi State, Mullen was a graduate assistant at Notre Dame before being hired as the Falcons’ quarterbacks coach by Urban Meyer.
Not only did he meet his wife during his time with the Falcons in 2001 and 2002, he was part of a coaching staff that basically came of age. That staff is now spread all over the landscape of college football.
‘‘We had a great time at Bowling Green,’’ Mullen said. ‘‘It was my first full-time coaching position ... (I got) to work with Josh Harris, Andy Sahm, and Omar Jacobs at quarterback.
‘‘We experimented with a lot of things on offense,’’ Mullen added. ‘‘Really the offense we are running today, and a lot of people have kind of emulated, came from sitting in those rooms at Bowling Green; those old offices in the Doyt.’’
Among the assistants on the BG staffs in ’01 and ’02 are: John Hevesy and Billy Gonzales, who are now with Mullen at Mississippi State; Greg Studrawa, now at LSU; Tim Beckman, now the head coach at Illinois; Mike Ward, also at Illinois; and Gregg Brandon, a former BGSU head coach, who is now at New Mexico State.
The graduate assistants were: D.J. Durkin, now the defensive coordinator at Florida; and Zach Azzanni, the wide receivers coach at Tennessee.
‘‘We learned a lot; we cut our teeth there ...It was a great coaching staff we had there,’’ Mullen said.
‘‘I’m a completely different coach (now), because you are always evolving,’’ Mullen added. ‘‘Hopefully, I have gotten a lot better since then.’’
The current Falcons play Mullen’s Bulldogs Saturday for Mississippi State’s Homecoming. Kickoff is set for 7:38 p.m.
‘‘Bowling Green just happened to fall on it (Homecoming) this year,’’ Mullen said. ‘‘We had the opportunity to get this game done, and get it scheduled. It’s going to be neat to play, just because a lot of guys on our staff have ties to Bowling Green, and I met my wife when I was coaching at Bowling Green ... When you have that stuff going on, it’s a pretty neat deal.’’
SLOW STARTS: Starting slowly on offense, has been a problem for the Falcons this season, despite their 5-1 record.
‘‘There is certainly a concern in some of these games that if we don’t get it going, and if our defense doesn’t play well early, we can fall behind,’’ BG head coach Dave Clawson said. ‘‘We need to find a way to try to spark that offense earlier.
‘‘We’re not one of those teams that comes out in a game — and we’re in a shotgun, we’re really pretty, and we’re pitching it and catching it,’’ Clawson added. ‘‘We’re still a run-based team. We throw the ball better than we did a year ago, but we’re still a run-based offense. Sometimes that takes a while to get going.
‘‘I certainly feel there are a lot of areas that we need to get better at, if we want to achieve the goals this football team has.’’
LEWIS: Mississippi State wide receiver Jameon Lewis is a big-time playmaker, Clawson said.
‘‘If the first guy has a chance to make a play on him and doesn’t make it, the band is going to be tuning up and it’s going to be loud,’’ Clawson said about the big-play ability of 5-foot-9, 195 pound, Lewis.
Lewis has 19 receptions for 359 yards and three touchdowns this fall. Lewis has also returned seven kickoffs for 203 yards.
PAYDAY: Bowling Green receives $850,000 to play at Mississippi State.
TV: Saturday’s BG at Mississippi State game is being televised by Fox Sports Net and is scheduled to be on STO.
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