October 15, 2009
Melichar making moves along the line
Mark Melichar has moved around to several different spots along the offensive line during his tenure at Mississippi State.
The 6-foot-5, 305-pound junior began his career at tackle but made the transition to guard in the spring displaying the type of versatility the Bulldogs need in a quality backup in the trenches.
"I played tackle the first couple of years and they have moved me to guard now," Melichar said. "I've been practicing at both right and left guard. Coach (John) Hevesy has been stressing that if you are not a starter that it's in your best interest to know every position. I know both of the guards and being by the tackles every day, I'm starting to pick up on what they are doing. I've seen a lot of different positions and I think that just makes me more versatile so I can help the team any way that I can."
The move inside to guard is much more involved than many fans realize. The fundamentals of blocking remain the same but the caliber of player lining up across on the opposing side contrast drastically.
"The players are different that you are going against," Melichar said. "Inside you have bigger bodies and at tackle you have more finesse players and the faster guys on the edge. It takes a little more concentration to know where you are and the proper footwork. I feel fine at both positions. I was a little hesitant at guard at first just because I had never played it until this spring. I've picked up well on it."
Helping with his transition to guard was Hevesy, the Bulldogs new offensive line coach. Hevesy aided in the development of several top linemen while at Florida and has already made a difference at MSU in his first season.
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