July 27, 2012

Maxwell eagerly awaits the start of training camp

CHICAGO - Andrew Maxwell admires the way Kirk Cousins carried himself both on and off the field during his time in the Michigan State football program.

But the 6-foot-3, 212-pound first-year starting quarterback will not change who he is as a player or person in an effort to emulate Cousins, a three-year captain and starter for the Spartans.

"You have to be careful of putting that pressure on yourself to fill those shoes," Maxwell said. "Kirk and I are different people. Kirk's success on the field speaks for itself. His reputation off the field is well known. A great player, better person. I have to realize that I am not Kirk Cousins. I am Andrew Maxwell and I have to be the same person I have been in that locker room since I got in here in 2009. If I try and morph into this person that I haven't been, that I am not, how is that going to translate with the people in the locker room who know me?"

Mark Dantonio expects quarterback to remain a position of strength with Maxwell starting.

"I have a great deal of confidence in Andrew as a person and as a player and always have," Dantonio said. "With all due respect to Kirk, I feel like if something had happened we were in very good hands. As I mentioned earlier, it takes a special person to be patient in this day and age, to wait and continue to work hard and do the things he needs to do. He is an established leader on our football team."

Dantonio was asked to quantify his level of confidence in Maxwell.

"One to ten? A ten," said Dantonio. "I have seen him perform for the last three years and I have listened to our quarterbacks coach Dave Warner talk about him from day one. We talk about our players almost daily. I have seen his arm strength. I have seen his ability to get out of pressure situations. I have seen his composure against our defense. I have seen him get up after he has been knocked down. He is an extremely quick learner with a good head on his shoulders and he is composed. I have no worries."

After missing the second half of spring football with an ankle injury, Maxwell believes training camp will take on added importance.

"Going into training camp there is a little extra excitement, there is a little extra weight to it, just getting back into the groove," Maxwell said. "Summer conditioning is great, seven-on-seven is great, and one-on-ones are great in the summer. But when you really put the pads on and it becomes a live situation and everything has to work together, that's when you know find out how much work has to be done. That's when you really put in the work to get ready for the season."

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