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MSU's Russell likes to spend time in the tree stand hunting

December 22, 2012

Mississippi State quarterback Tyler Russell (17) avoids tacklers, but likes to hunt down deer. (Photo by David Allen Williams, For Starkville Daily News)

Many Mississippi State fans know quite a bit about the players on the field, but know little about the Bulldogs off the field.

For instance, punter Baker Swedenberg plays in a band.

Junior starting quarterback Tyler Russell spends most of his free time in the woods usually in a tree stand.
The Meridian native has put his name out there this season for all Bulldogs to see. He has led the Bulldogs to an 8-4 record. He has completed 219-of-366 passes for 2,791 yards. He has also thrown a school-record 22 touchdowns.

Many know about his accomplishments on the field, but few know his passion for hunting.

Before the Bulldogs head to Jacksonville, Fla. for a New Year's Day matchup with No. 21 (Associated Press) Northwestern (9-3) in the TaxSlayer.com Gator Bowl, Russell will take a few days to celebrate Christmas and do one of his favorite things.

With all the bowl practices, Russell hasn't had a chance to do his Christmas shopping. His plan is to do his best to make it into the woods.

"I don't know if I'm going," Russell said. "I have to do all kind of shopping. I have to buy people stuff. I might get one or two hunts in but that's probably about it."

Russell shoots a 7mm during rifle season, but he also likes the challenge of a bow.

"I like to bow hunt a lot," Russell said. "I try to bow hunt every now and then."

While growing up, Russell has several spots to hunt when he is at home. Since he came to Mississippi State, he has had to find places around here to keep up with his hobby.

"I have a few places around here," Russell said. "(There is) a place in Ackerman, (and) a place a few minutes from here."

For Russell, he can hunt alone, but he likes to spend time with his family in the woods.

"I really just hunt back home," Russell said. "(I hunt in) Clarke County where we have land. It's fun to go back out there with my brothers and my dad and hunt with them."

Russell has set his sights on winning a bowl game as a starter. I'm sure before he departs for Florida, his goal will be to top his best deer.

"The biggest deer I've killed is probably 11-point that scored 135," Russell said.

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