The 2013 Mississippi State Bulldogs looked to be in good hands from the quarterback position. Senior Tyler Russell was returning, after having a strong 2012 season.
Turns out that the Bulldogs were in good hands, they just were not the hands of Russell. Instead, they were the hands of Dak Prescott, a sophomore who was forced into action when Russell went down with an injury early in the season.
Prescott is physically imposing, at 6-2 and 230 pounds. And he uses every inch and every pound of his body when he ‘s on the field. After playing only briefly as a freshman in 2012, Prescott became the primary option on offense for the Bulldogs in 2013.
In 11 games in 2013, Prescott was 156-of-267 through the air for 1,940 yards, with 10 touchdowns and seven interceptions. He also rushed 134 times, just three less than team leader LaDarius Perkins. In those 134 carries, Prescott netted a team-leading 829 yards and 13 touchdowns. Prescott also caught two passes, both for touchdowns, accounting for 53 yards.
If Mississippi State is to continue its run of success under head coach Dan Mullen, Prescott is going to have to make even more plays next season. With the departure of Russell and Perkins, Prescott will be called on to play even better next season.
One major fix would be cutting down on interceptions. To Prescott’s credit, this was his first significant year of playing against Southeastern Conference defenses, so he figures to only get better.
If Prescott can limit his mistakes, there is no reason to think he could not become one of the more dynamic players in the country in 2014.
Tim Letcher is a contributing writer for RantSports.com and a member of the Football Writers Association of America. Follow him on Twitter @TimLetcher , on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.