Firings stun MSU players
By By Danny P. Smith / special to The Star
Dec. 4, 2002
STARKVILLE The news that Mississippi State head football coach Jackie Sherrill had fired half of his staff Monday was a shock to several of the Bulldogs.
Those relieved of their duties are defensive coordinator Joe Lee Dunn, defensive line coach John Hendrick, offensive coordinator Sparky Woods, offensive guard and centers coach Carroll McCray, and wide receiver coach Craig Stump.
The Bulldogs are preparing for exams, but the firings were enough to make them stop and take notice.
After Mississippi State's second straight losing season of 3-9, which included an 0-8 mark in the Southeastern Conference, Sherrill felt the moves were necessary.
According to defensive end Jason Clark of Starkville, who will join Day as a senior next season, the players can't worry about who the coaches are.
Clark's responsibility as a player won't keep him from missing Dunn and Hendrick.
McCray was the position coach for redshirt freshman offensive guard Johnny Wadley, who started three games at left guard for the Bulldogs during the season.
Wadley gave credit to McCray and Woods for bringing him along.
Sherrill said he would like to complete his staff within the next two weeks.
The players don't know who Sherrill is considering to fill the spots on his staff, but they trust his judgment.
Day said Mississippi State still wants to show an attacking style of defense no matter who steps in as defensive coordinator or line coach.
Wadley is anxious to move on to his sophomore season as a part of the offensive line.