Noteworthy: Suffered a broken hand in spring practice, but should be 100 percent when fall camp opens ... Despite playing defense, Bland has four career touchdowns entering his senior year ... Started the 2001 season at free safety, but was later moved to outside linebacker ... Has played in 32 career games and 16 as a starter ... Owns two career blocked kicks.
2001: Saw action in all 11 games and was in the starting rotation six times (5 at free safety, 1 at OLB) ... Was seventh on the team in tackles with 46 stops to go along with a personal-best three tackles for loss of yards and his first career sack ... Was in on a season-high eight tackles at Louisiana-Lafayette, while collecting seven against Idaho ... His first career sack came in the season finale against Connecticut ... Also had two TFL's in the win over the Huskies to go along with a forced fumble ... Bland blocked an extra point attempt against Louisiana-Monroe and a field goal versus Connecticut.
2000: Played in 10 games, including nine as a starter at free safety ... Also played extensively on special teams ... Missed the Mississippi State game due to a high ankle sprain ... Finished third on the team in tackles with 66, while also adding two tackles for lost yardage ... Tallied four pass breakups and recovered one fumble against Florida ... Had an interception against Connecticut that he returned 71 yards for a touchdown ... Registered four double-digit tackle games with a career-high of 13 stops against Louisiana Tech ... Had 11 tackles at Florida and 10 each against Illinois and Louisiana-Monroe ... His seven solo tackles against La. Tech was a personal best.
1999: Played in all 11 games, including one as a starter at Louisiana-Lafayette ... Recorded nine tackles on the season and a team-best three fumble recoveries ... Had a personal-best three tackles against UT Martin and Central Florida ... Scored three touchdowns on the season ... Returned a fumble 80 yards against Louisiana Tech for his first collegiate touchdown ... Against UT Martin he hit paydirt twice with a 61-yard interception return for a touchdown, then collected a fumbled punt and took it four yards in for the score ... The three scores were the most by a defensive player since Mike Caldwell registered three in 1992.
1998: Took a redshirt year.
High School: Played for Ozzie Harrel at Cedar Grove High School ... Voted all-county in football ... Was a three-year letterman in football and four-year letterwinner in track ... Was the state champion in the 400 and 300-meter intermediate hurdles.
Personal: Parents: Murray and Elizabeth Bland ... Born: 3/6/80 ... Major: Physical Education/Teaching.
Tackles UA A Tot. Sacks TFL FR INT
1999 5 4 9 0-0 0-0 3-90 1-61 2000 30 36 66 0-0 2-4 1-0 1-71 2001 25 21 46 1-4 3-9 0-0 0-0 Total 60 61 121 1-4 5-13 4-90 2-132