Southern Miss Starts Game Week Practice for Season Opener against Mississippi State

Southern Miss athletics news release

HATTIESBURG, Miss. – The Southern Miss football team returned to the practice field here Tuesday to begin its game week preparations for its season opener this weekend at Mississippi State.

Game time is set for 6:30 p.m., Saturday, from Davis Wade Stadium at Scott Field in Starkville and will be televised on the SEC Network, as well as broadcast on the Southern Miss IMG Sports Network.

The Golden Eagles returned to the practice field in full pads after taking its NCAA mandated day off on Monday and for Southern Miss coach Todd Monken the team did a nice job of fighting through the day off from practice.

"I thought our guys fought through (the effects of the day off) and now really it is just trying to do things better," said Monken. "We are just trying to eliminate mistakes. I know our guys will play hard and will be excited to play. Now we just try to have it look like the way we want it to look."

One of the things Monken has emphasized during the offseason was having more physicality from his team. An area where he is looking for that improvement is in the running game, where the Golden Eagles look to add extra player in the offensive backfield more this fall.

"We have to be more physical running the football and that starts with (adding) a tight end or a fullback, with our backs running harder as well as our line playing better," said Monken. "Having a fullback is the sign of trying to play physical football and we are going to try like heck to be able to do that some."

The Golden Eagles return to work Wednesday afternoon at the Joe P. Park Practice Facility as they continue to prepare for the Bulldogs.

On Thursday at 5 p.m., the athletics department and the Southern Miss Activities Council (SMAC) are inviting all fans to meet at 5 p.m., Thursday, Aug. 28, for the Soaring to Starkville Send-Off party.

This event will take place in front of the Duff Athletic Center with fans having an opportunity to greet the Golden Eagle football team as they wrap up their final practice at home. Free pizza will be provided courtesy of SMAC and free drinks will be available thanks to Coca-Cola of Hattiesburg. Fans will be able to take part in an Eagle Walk along with The Pride of Mississippi, Southern Miss cheerleaders and Seymour, as the team makes their way off the practice field.

Fans of all ages are invited and encouraged to attend this event and wish the Golden Eagles well for the beginning of the 2014 football season.