Mike Leach

Mississippi State football coach Mike Leach spoke to the Tupelo’s Rotary Club, and others from around the state, during a Zoom call on Monday.

New Mississippi State football coach Mike Leach believes there will be a college football season this year.

Leach joined a Zoom conference call with Rotary Clubs from across the state on Monday afternoon, where he talked about previous coaching stops, his thoughts on recruiting and what he’s enjoyed about his time in Mississippi.

One of the options being discussed for the 2020 college football season is playing only conference games. The Pac 12 and the Big Ten conferences have already announced they are playing conference-only schedules, while the SEC announced last Monday that it will wait for more information before making that decision.

The Big 12 and the ACC have not made decisions regarding schedules, either.

Leach said on Monday that he wants to play a full schedule and would be disappointed if his team plays less than 10 football games this season.

“We would all like to play a full schedule,” Leach said. “I think I can speak for everybody on that. They’re meeting about it probably as we speak trying to sort it out. I try to take comfort in the fact that we’re two months away and hope that we get this thing on the upswing and get to play all of our non-conference games as well.”

Leach went on to talk about how he loves being in Starkville, and how recruiting is different in Mississippi than how it was during his stops at Texas Tech and Washington State.

He said in Lubbock, Texas, he was having to travel to Houston, which was “9 1/2, 10 hours away,” and also made numerous trips to Dallas. While in Washington, there weren’t enough players in state so he was constantly having to fly into California.

That’s not the case in Starkville, and he loves how centrally located it is.

Leach said you can look at about a four-hour radius around Starkville and you have the entire states of Mississippi, Alabama and Louisiana, most of Tennessee, a portion of Arkansas and Texas, and half of Georgia and the Florida panhandle.

“I used to look up per capita in the NFL where the most players are from, and the guys who ended up on top the most are Mississippi, Louisiana and South Carolina …” Leach said. “The other thing that’s good about the distance to everywhere, when it comes to camps, unofficial visits and a player to have an opportunity to come see your facilities and your practices, they’re within driving distance, too.”

dalton.middleton@journalinc.com

Twitter: @DLMiddleton8

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