By MATTHEW STEVENS
Dylan Favre did a lot of running in Thursday night’s open scrimmage whether it was drawn up that way in the playbook or not.
Whether the former Parade All-American was running away from pass rushers or running around looking for somebody to celebrate with after a touchdown, Favre wore his emotions out for everybody to see at Davis Wade Stadium.
“He’s a playmaker,” Mullen said. “You can see his excitement out there. He loves to play the game and that’s really important.”
It also helped last year’s Mr. Football selection in the state of Mississippi played a pretty solid game as well. Favre ended the evening with 178 yards passing and five total touchdowns in an intra-squad scrimmage for the younger and less experienced MSU players. The 5-foot-11 quarterback led his White team to a 30-12 victory in the hour-long controlled scrimmage.
In a teaching point afterwards, Mullen noticed a lot of family traits from his future Hall of Fame selection uncle like throwing off his back foot without looking at the receiver and making several defensive ends miss on sack attempts.
One of the spectacular plays that bordered on the line of irresponsible was on a 10-yard touchdown pass to freshman tight end Brandon Hill formerly of West Lowndes High School. Favre ran around in a full circle twice while braking two tackles that would’ve resulted in
a sack and then found Hill in the back of the end zone for the game’s final touchdown.
“There’s some guys that made some plays that you’re not going to get away with if you’re playing an SEC game out here (and) he could be one,” Mullen said with a laugh. “That’s the stuff he’ll have to learn and develop.”
The Maroon team was quarterbacked by redshirt freshman backup Tyler Russell and walk-on signal caller Brantley Adams. Mullen said Russell, a former Parade All-American as well, was limited in his workload but finished with 115 yards passing and a 29-yard touchdown strike to
freshman Malcolm Johnson on the game’s opening drive.
Russell, who has been getting most of the first-team reps in practice this week, is trying to build confidence and chemistry with the freshman receivers that will be redshirted and State fans will likely
see in the near future starting with spring practices in March.
“It felt good to get reps with the young guys and help motivate them,” Russell said. “It makes me wonder when I was in that same position but I’m still young so I’m still learning but I feel good when they come to me and ask me about certain situations.”
The few scattered fans that arrived for the festivities got to see Favre turn and hand the ball to freshman tailback Nick Griffin a bunch as well. The former Class 3A first-team selection out of Perry Central High School in New Augusta ran for 32 yards on 11 carries last night.
Griffin has sat behind a pair of juniors and a redshirt freshman on the tailback depth chart but this week has been critical experience for him and a lot of other players in the 2010 recruiting class.
“It’s good to see some guys in a live situation and fun for some of our other guys to come in the stadium and get some reps,” Mullen said.