BA quarterback wants to write, play college football

Published 5:00 am Wednesday, October 25, 2000

Brookhaven Academy senior quarterback Jake Sessums hasn’tdecided where he will attend college.

Brookhaven Academy senior quarterback Jake Sessums hasn’tdecided where he will attend college. He wants to play football andpursue a career in journalism and creative writing.

Sessums possesses the quarterback skills to play collegefootball. In his latest outing, Sessums completed 5 of 6 passes for171 yards and 3 touchdowns as the Cougars celebrated homecomingwith a 28-22 victory over Wilkinson County Christian Academy. Healso rushed 12 times for 68 yards, giving him 259 yardsoffense.

For his performance, Sessums has been selected The DailyLeader’s Offensive Player of the Week for the ninth week ofthe 2000 season. It is the second time for him to earn the honorthis year.

Sessums, an elusive 5-foot-11, 155-pound standout, was named tothe Leader’s 1999 All-Lincoln County Football Team. He hasdirected the Cougars to a 6-4 overall record and a 2-1 District4-AA worksheet, proving his durability in the process.

So far this season, Sessums has passed for 1,602 yards andrushed for 558 yards. He has rushed for 11 touchdowns and passedfor 16. He has 8 kickoff returns for 207 yards. He returned akickoff against Porters Chapel for a TD.

Against the WCCA Rams, Sessums and the Cougars often faced a9-man defensive front. “We didn’t have to throw many passes becausethey were deep patterns,” said Sessums.

“They were mainly rollout passes where the guards pull forblocking,” he continued. “Grant Case and Adam Smith got behindtheir secondary and made some good catches.”

Case, a wide receiver, caught a TD pass of 45 yards. Smithcaught scoring passes for 46 and 34 yards as a tight end. Smithfinished with 3 receptions for 127 yards.

“On the bootlegs and play-action, Adam would slip outside, andbreak on a 45-degree slant,” said Sessums. “He would get behind thecornerback and the safety. He’s a big target.”

Sessums said his offensive line has steadily improved its passblocking. “They have worked hard to get better.”

Working in the offensive line are Jeffrey Waycaster and BenSandifer at guard, Carl Craig and Matthew Wooten at tackle, andJason McGuffie at center. Ben Davis and Dustin King provide passblocking when they aren’t running the football.

Brookhaven Academy coach Doug Clanton said Sessums worked hardduring the offseason, increasing his strength and quickness. “Jakededicated himself to the weight room this year and he got stronger.He was elected as one of the team captains. He’s taken a few licksbut he keeps bouncing back.”

In third-down, passing situations, Sessums is inserted as asafety on defense. “He has made some crucial tackles for us,” saidClanton. “He’s on kickoff return teams too.”

The Cougars wrap up their regular season Friday night at BowlingGreen (6-3, 3-0) in Franklinton, La. They need a victory overBowling Green to reach the AA state playoffs. The Buccaneersalready have qualified for the playoffs.

“Bowling Green has a real good team,” said Sessums. “They beatWilkinson 33-0. They are real tough against the run so I think wecan pass against them.”

Sessums said he would love to see the Cougars duplicate the 1993state championship campaign. They finished the regular season 6-4after a 1-3 start and caught fire in the playoffs. They won threestraight state playoff games, beating Greenville Christian in thetitle test.

“We have nine seniors on the team and we are pretty tight,” saidSessums. “A lot of us have been playing together for a longtime.”

Sessums runs the 40-yard dash in 4.6. He bench presses 175pounds and squats with 315 pounds. An above-average student in theclassroom, he maintains a 3.5 GPA and has scored 23 on the ACT.

“I want to get a 26 on my ACT,” said Sessums. “I want to playfootball next year, either at a junior college or a D-II or D-IIIschool. We’ll just have to see how things go.”

Sessums said he enjoys playing for Coach Clanton. “He knows howto get us fired up and ready to play.”

Part of an athletic family, Jake’s father, Dr. Kim Sessums,played basketball at Belhaven College. Jake has two youngerbrothers, Stewart, 8th grade; and Price, sixth grade, who playfootball. His sister, Jody, is a junior cheerleader.