Stoops says Nick Haynes “very helpful” to teammates

Nick Haynes. (Vicky Graff Photo)

By LARRY VAUGHT

Going into Saturday’s game at Mississippi State, coach Mark Stoops likes the offensive line mix that now includes redshirt freshman center Drake Jackson. That has allowed Bunchy Stallings to move back to guard where he played last year.

But Jackson got his chance to play because senior Nick Haynes has had trouble maintaining his weight because of his battle with diabetes.

“I think Nick’s situation and his health is a big key to us as we move forward trying to get his weight and his strength back up,” Stoops said. “I had the opportunity to see Nick this weekend and spend some time with him Saturday afternoon and he looked rested.

“Feeling good. It’s still one thing to be rested, but to put on the weight that’s necessary. It’s hard.”

One good thing is that Haynes has continued to provide leadership for younger teammates.

“Nick is one of the leaders on this football team and has a lot of experience at offensive line. He’s played a lot of positions. He’s very versatile,” Stoops said.

‘And I think the players have great respect for him both on the offensive line and all positions. I think he’s very helpful. He’s been very unselfish through this process.”

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