Mississippi State head coach Rick Ray talked to reporters as soon as the first practice concluded.
He seemed to be in great spirits and said the practice went great and just as he mostly expected.
He said senior big man Wendell Lewis and freshman guard Jacoby Davis were on the sideline working with trainers.
Here are some of his highlights –
Describe the first practice:
“Our guys had a really good pace of play to them. They played hard. I told them there are two components to us having shorter practices. One is playing hard. For the most part our guys do that, so that’s not a problem. The second component is listening. Sometimes we have re-explain drills and re-explain cuts over and over again. That’s what drives practices on. We want to have shorter, crisp practices. Right now we did a pretty good job of it, but we have to open our ears and listen so we don’t have to re-explain things.”
What did you like about the tempo:
“I thought our guys played hard. I think the pace of play was really good. There are some times in a two hour practice, that’s going to happen where it drags down a little bit. There was always somebody that was a veteran, like Tyson (Cunningham), Fred (Thomas), Roquez (Johnson) or Colin (Borchert) that got it going again. I thought the practice was really spirited. The thing I liked the most about it, was when we competed and guys went at each other. That’s what you need.”
What were you looking for today:
“I wanted guys to come in with some exuberance about practice. I want them excited about the first day of practice because it’s a long haul, like a marathon. If the guys come in there first day kind of dreading practice, then you have no chance. The guys came in with a lot of excitement and a lot of enthusiasm.”