Camp Notebook #4

August 9, 2002 · MT Media Relations
(following today's practice on Aug. 9)

MCCOLLUM ON THE DEFENSE:"We have definitely helped ourselves on defense through recruiting. We are bringing in more speed and size, and it shows when you look at our guys in practice. We still have to improve in technique and tackling. Defense is played with an attitude and we have grown a lot in that area, but we still need to get better. I want us flying around the football, being mentally tough, and playing every down like it's our last one. Defense is all about attitude and we are starting to develop that at Middle Tennessee."

WESTBROOK ON OUTLAND LIST:DALLAS (FWAA) - Middle Tennessee offensive tackle Brandon Westbrook was one of 63 players to make the 2002 Outland Trophy Watch List, which was released today by the Football Writers Association of America. The Outland Trophy is awarded each year to the top interior lineman in college football.

Westbrook, a freshman all-American in 2000, was a first team all-Sun Belt selection in 2001 and is also a first team all-preseason pick in 2002. The Cumming, GA, native is entering his junior season.

"It's a great honor to be on that list, but right now that's just paper," Westbrook stated. "My first priority right now is to help this football team win games and grab a conference championship. If we do that, then all the other things will fall into place." The winner of the 2002 Outland Trophy will be announced Dec. 12 on the ESPN College Football Awards Show from Orlando, Fla. Three finalists will be selected by the FWAA All-America Committee in late November and will appear on the show. The winner also will receive his trophy during a banquet on Jan. 9 in Omaha, Neb. The banquet is sponsored by the Omaha Sports Committee, which additionally will honor a past Outland winner at the Doubletree Hotel in downtown Omaha. Miami's Bryant McKinnie won the 2001 Award while leading his team to the national championship. Tennessee's John Henderson, the 2000 Outland winner, was one of the three finalists for the 2001 Award, but failed to become the second person to win back-to-back Outland Trophies. Dave Rimington of Nebraska (1981 and 1982) remains the only two-time winner. The Outland Trophy has been presented every year since 1946 and is the third oldest award in major-college football. The award is named after the late John Outland, an All-America lineman at Penn during the turn of the century. Dr. Outland established the award in 1946, a year before his death, with the help of the FWAA. He believed it was important for lineman to receive greater recognition. And for the last 56 years they have because of his award.

For the complete list, please log onto the following web site: http://www.sportswriters.net/fwaa/news/outlandwatch02.html

STATISTICS:During team drills this morning, QB Andrico Hines completed 6 of 10 passes, while Andre Green was 3-for-4 and Blake Rolan was 2-for-3. Freshman Josh Harris made good on 3 of 6 passes. David Youell, Wardell Alsup, and Ryan Edmiston all caught two passes each. During the earlier pass skeleton drill, Tyrone Calico led all pass catchers with three receptions.

FIRST CAMP PRANK:Offensive linemen Jonathan Barry and Josh Willoughby convinced all the freshmen linemen at the conclusion of Thursday's practice to jog the length of the field to see Coach McCollum for what they described as a Leadership Council meeting. When the freshmen arrived, Coach Mac asked them what they wanted and the group responded by saying they were here for the "leadership meeting". Coach Mac was obviously confused, and looked to the other end of the field where Barry and Willoughby were waving back and laughing. It may not top all the shaved heads that are shining in camp, but it does lighten the moment. INTERVIEWS:The Daily News Journal's Tony Stinnett talked with LB Sheldon Durham, FS Michael Woods, WR Wardell Alsup, DE Curtis Daniely, RB Dwone Hicks, Coach Todd Bradford, Coach Steve Davis and Head Coach Andy McCollum. The Tennessean's Chip Cirillo interviewed WR Tyrone Calico, QB Andrico Hines, Coach Alex Robins, and McCollum. Aaron Solomon from Channel 4 sat down with RB Reshard Lee, WR David Youell, Hicks, Hines, and McCollum. Denise Gideon from the media relations office talked to Calico for an upcoming web site feature.

FAN DAY:Fan Day is set for August 17 from Noon - 2 PM at Floyd Stadium. Blue Raider fans will have the opportunity to grab autographs from all the coaches and players, while also being able to snap a photo with members of the Blue Raider family. An autograph poster will be provided. The Bunny Bread Mountain slide will be available to all the kids, while the University will give away FREE Hormel hot dogs and cokes.

TIDBITS: The Blue Raiders competed in half pads this morning and went through what Coach Mac called a spirited practice - Andy McCollum will be a guest on ESPN Radio with Mel Kiper on Saturday morning (11:32 AM) - CBS Sportsline debuted their Sun Belt Conference preview today and picked the Blue Raiders to win the 2002 title - Season tickets are available by calling 1-888-Yes-MTSU.

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