Mississippi State defensive coordinator Zach Arnett encountered success in his SEC debut last weekend via the Bulldogs’ 44-34 victory at LSU. But on Wednesday evening, Arnett was quick to point out that his side of the ball has a lot to “clean up”.
Arnett talked about the good, the bad and the ugly as Mississippi State preps for Saturday’s home opener against Arkansas:
Q: Your defense brought a lot of pressure against LSU and had some mismatches with Tyrus Wheat. What was it that you saw that you could exploit there?
Arnett: That is our base defense. Our base defense is to bring pressure. Our guys did a nice job of executing but by no means were we perfect. There were quite a few busts out there that could’ve and should’ve led to points. Thank goodness it didn’t but we have a lot of things to clean up.
Q: Regarding the clean-up process, what in particular did you see that needs improving?
Arnett: Missed assignments, guys either going the wrong way or not executing the call or busted coverage when you got receivers wide open. Thanks goodness one guy (Jordan Davis) in the pass rush can make a Herculean effort and reach out and hits the quarterback’s arm that leads to an interception instead of a touchdown. All of our opponents watching that film are chomping at the bit to play us on defense because they see a whole bunch of opportunities for big plays and points.
Q: The secondary seemed to tackle well on the back end, especially Shawn Preston. What did you take away from his performance when you evaluated the film?
Arnett: Shawn likes to run to the ball and hit. That position he plays in our defense,