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July 7, 2011It's July, which means it's basically football season, right? Well, we're certainly close. With that in mind, the BulldogBlitz.com Senior Spotlight continues today. Every day, until there are none left, we will profile one of Mississippi State's seniors entering their last year in Starkville.
No. 99 Sean Ferguson, defensive end, 6-3, 255-pounds
How did he get here? Ferguson came to Mississippi State from Miami, Fla., where he was a two-star prospect out of Norland High School playing both defensive end and offensive line. He was named as one of the top 25 prospects in the Miami-Dade County area by the Miami Herald and played in both the Florida All-Star game and the Broward-Dade County All-Star game. Ferguson also had scholarship offers from Central Michigan and Florida International.
What did he do last year? Ferguson appeared in all of the Bulldogs 13 games last season making six starts. He recorded 23 tackles (nine solo, 14 assists) , five tackles for loss, one pass breakup, one pass deflection and three quarterback hurries. He made a season-high four tackles against both Arkansas and Ole Miss.
What does he need to do in 2011? Ferguson received a lot of hype his rookie season by becoming the first true freshman to start his first career game in a number of years. He has seemingly plateaued since.
Ferguson has always remained in the rotation at defensive end throughout his career but never has made the jump that many expected him to early in his career. MSU lost a major pass rushing threat as well as defensive leader in Pernell McPhee last season. Ferguson, with his three years of experience, is naturally the first guy that comes to mind as his replacement.
He has to establish himself as a legitimate pass rushing threat early on in the season to help off the edge. In 37 career games, Ferguson has only one career sack.
Coach's quote: "I thought Sean was leaps and bounds this spring from where he was a year ago. And he should be going into his senior year and only guaranteed 12 more games. I think Sean took that to heart and improved and also took to heart to being a better leader. He was out there teaching younger guys and that was a positive sign.
"The thing to develop with Sean is just consistency. He is a guy that everybody looks to cause of his three years of experience in the SEC. He wants to become a dominant pass rusher and he can help us quite a bit." - Chris Wilson, MSU co-defensive coordinator/ defensive line coach