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    Marshall Law: Malzahn's intensity shows at Media Days

    July 18, 2013


    Thoughts and impressions after a long second day at Southeastern Conference Media Days ...

    Anybody who doesn't believe first-year Auburn head coach Gus Malzahn is one intense dude isn't paying attention. Malzahn didn't just politely disagree Wednesday with the idea of slowing down up-tempo offenses, he disagreed fiercely. He didn't care what the two biggest proponents of the idea - Arkansas' Bret Bielema and Alabama's Nick Saban - thought.

    Malzahn  didn't come close to getting personal with anyone. Bielema on the other hand, well, he came lot closer.

    Seems to me the best way to deal with hurryup, no-huddle offensive teams is to make them go three-and-out. Do that, and no one gets tired. ...

    After making the rounds of interviews with fullback Jay Prosch on Wednesday, I had a new appreciation for the grind it is for the players and coaches who come to Media Days. ...

    Arkansas is sure to be picked low in the West when the preseason order of finish and All-SEC teams are released today, but the blustery Bielema says he doesn't care.

    "I do excel in situations where people think very, very little of us," Bielema said. "For those of you that want to vote us lower, I mean that with all my heart. Just sit back and watch."

    Lots of people will do just that. ...

    I didn't get close enough Wednesday to hear Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Johnny Manziel explain his troubled summer, but I am told he handled himself well. Not surprising, really.

    I have no reason to believe that Manziel is not a good person. It's just amazing to me that he talks and immediately I read columns about a 20-year-old kid who should be cut some slack. I still wonder where that attitude was in 2010 when Cam Newton was having one of the great seasons in NCAA history.

    Newton was denied the SEC Athlete of the Year honor that he should have won unanimously. In a remarkably petty move, the Football Writers Association of America left him off its All-America team. Hundreds refused to vote for him for the Heisman Trophy. ...

    One thing you can count on every year at Media Days: Coaches of the teams that are supposed to be good will tell you why they aren't as good as you think. Coaches of teams that are supposed to be bad will tell you why they're better than you think. ...

    Speaking of Texas A&M, Kevin Sumlin is one of the more impressive coaches I've been around. I don't know him, but I like the way he talks and the way he carries himself. His record on the field speaks for itself. ...

    Senior Auburn cornerback Chris Davis had reason to be proud of himself Wednesday. Davis has been notorioiusly shy about doing interviews during his Auburn days, but he was articulate, engaging and in general very good under the hot lights Wednesday.

    Dee Ford and Jay Prosch did very well, too, but it comes much more naturally for them. ...

    It's really not surprising that Mark Stoops has generated so much enthusiasm at Kentucky. Believe it or not, Kentucky folks have supported even bad football pretty well over the years. The problem a long line of coaches have had is that there just aren't nearly enough prospects in the state to keep the team going.

    With Stoops' connections in Ohio and in Florida, that could change. ...

    Mississippi State coach Dan Mullen didn't make a show of it as he has before, but he still got through his Media Days appearance without saying the words "Ole Miss." There really should be no place for such silliness in the SEC. ...

    Until next time ...

     

    Phillip Marshall is a Senior Writer for AuburnTigers.com. Follow Marshall on Twitter:

     

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