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Sprints is Starring Dan Mullen Today // 04.29.10

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Dream big, coach.

Dan Mullen is making the spring rounds, as all coaches do. He talked with Chris Low first, and he's got some lofty visions in his head for this fall:

Mullen says unabashedly that the goal in Year No. 2 is to find a way to win the SEC West. But he’s also realistic. The Bulldogs play on the road next season against three teams that won the last four national championships -- at LSU on Sept. 18, at Florida on Oct. 16 and at Alabama on Nov. 13.

"Now I realize that’s not exactly a recipe for success," Mullen conceded. "One big key if we’re going to be successful next season is to win our home games."

I guess he thinks there will be a second year bump in Starkville similar to the one he had at Florida. The catch though is that Florida was a nine-win team the first year, not a five-win team. He also says he would be very disappointed to miss out on a bowl this season. Perhaps that might be a better bar to reach for.

And for Round 2...

Mullen also appeared on Paul Finebaum's radio program. Predictably, he got asked about Cam Newton (the former UF quarterback who was kicked from the team and resurfaced at Auburn) several times. More interestingly, he said he talked with his wife about what they would do if Florida had called him about the head coaching job during the winter when Urban Meyer said he was resigning.

Mullen said he didn't know what he would have done and didn't know if he'd be interested in the job. He later added that he's not sure he'd leave Mississippi State for another job because "the grass isn’t always greener on the other side with a lot of places." If this coaching thing doesn't work out for him, I'd say Dan Mullen would make a fine politician.

Speaking of Cameron Newton

He's the official starter at Auburn. We knew this announcement was coming, but here it is from the horse's mouth.

Cue the Herban Meyer jokes in 3...2...1...

After having notable players fall in the NFL draft in consecutive years because of weed concerns (Percy Harvin, Aaron Hernandez), the Orlando Sentinel's Jeremy Fowler decided to look into the state of the "marijuana culture" at Florida.

He spoke with Wondy Pierre-Louis, who was in the program from 2006-09. Pierre-Louis estimated that 75 percent (!) of the 2006 team partook of the drug based on talking with guys and positive tests. That fall starting DT Marcus Thomas was famously booted from the team for failing drug tests. Pierre-Louis says now it's nowhere near as bad as it was back then, but he declined to give an estimate. It's just one more thing to blame on Ron Zook, I guess.

Watch out, Florida and Bama fans.

Bill Connelly, who helps run SBN's Missouri blog, wrote a lengthy piece for Football Outsiders on the impact of players leaving in the NFL draft. The offense that stands to lose the most ground in the country? Florida, which should be at least 4% less effective. The defense that stands to lose the most ground in the country? Alabama, which should be almost 11% less effective.

As for next year's draft

Todd McShay has eight SEC players going in next year's first round. Caveat emptor with these things as always. After all, Jevan Snead was seventh overall on Mel Kiper's first 2010 big board. Where did he get drafted again?

A blast from the past.

Former Alabama and Kentucky head coach Bill Curry is enjoying his work at building the Georgia State football program.

Bids start at only $99.99!!

Someone who can't give away his old Jay Cutler Broncos jersey decided to repurpose it as an "authentic" Tim Tebow jersey and sell it on eBay. Copy paper and duct tape never looked so good.