Co-Lin coaches recruiting players

Published 6:00 am Thursday, January 6, 2005

Check the tire pressure and check the oil level. Collegefootball coaches are living in their vehicles this month, scanningthe countryside for high school talent, as the NCAA’s Feb. 2national signing date approaches.

The football recruiting crusade is heating up around the nation.Copiah-Lincoln Community College is no exception. Coach Glenn Davisand his staff are in the market for talented athletes, especiallyoutstanding skill players.

“The biggest thing is we are trying to find skill guys,” Davisadmitted. “The difference in our program was the lack of skillpositions; especially defensively, trying to cover people.”

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Davis watched his Wolves win their first game of the season atHolmes Community College in Goodman. That harbinger of futuresuccess crashed horribly as the Wolfpack lost eight straight gamesto finish 1-8.

In his first year at the helm, Davis inherited a losing programfrom David Poinsett (5-13 in two years) and it didn’t get anybetter. However, Davis’ team actually looked better losing thanPoinsett’s. Many of the games were close.

To be honest, the Co-Lin District as a whole is in a downwardslump when it comes to high school football talent. Natchez, theonly Class 5A school in the district, has won just two games (2-31)in three years.

Once upon a time, before consolidation, South Natchez and NorthNatchez High Schools used to sent a herd of solid football playersto Co-Lin. But that was yesterday.

Brookhaven should be able to contribute to Co-Lin’s futuresuccess this year. The Panthers enjoyed a great campaign, going14-1 and winning the Class 4A state championship.

Ole Brook standouts like quarterback Jimmy Johns, linebackerDarius Perkins and center Grant McDonnieal are expected to signDivision I-A or l-AA scholarships. Perkins and McDonnieal alsoexcel on the baseball diamond so they have extra options.

Co-Lin is allowed to protect 22 players in its district fromoutside junior college recruiters. Davis furnished this ofprotected players.

Brookhaven: WR Bud Chatman, DT Jessie Bowman,TE Michael Thrasher, RB Ronnie McNulty, OL Tyler Gatlin, OL GrantMcDonnieal, OL Zach Ray.

Hazlehurst: LB Damien Gary, WR Damoyn Carroll,DE Anthony Barnes.

Franklin County: RB DeAndre Davis, DB JonathanBrooks, QB/RB/DB Jasper O’Quinn.

Lawrence County: LB Kertario Hardy and OL KevinGreen.

Jefferson County: RB Ernest Havard, LB StevenKing, DB/WR Steven Chambliss.

Natchez: LB Jeremy Williams.

Mendenhall: LB Alex Williams.

Magee: LB Lamanuel McNair and OL JamesGlisson.

For your information none of the seniors from Lincoln Countyschools Loyd Star, Enterprise, Bogue Chitto and Enterprise wereprotected, nor Brookhaven Academy. Also, Wesson, Crystal Springsand Copiah Academy had none protected. Walk-ons are welcome.

Obviously, Simpson County Academy has an extremely largerecruiting base and a few seniors are going the senior collegeroute. Several of the players came from outside Simpson County tohelp lead the Cougars to a perfect record and the Class AA statechampionship.

Dan Napier, from Collins, lives in the Pearl River CommunityCollege district, home of the NJCAA national champions. Napier(5-10, 195) had 205 rushes for 2,037 yards and 30 touchdowns andwas a key to Simpson’s success.

Davis said he wants to sign several out-of-state skill players.”We would like to find an out-of-state wide receiver and somerunning backs.”

On the bright side, quarterback Beau Billeck is expected to beback after an injury-filled season. The Co-Lin offensive lineshould be stronger so that’s good news for Billeck.

Placekicker Nick Gunter of Wesson should be back afterrecovering from serious injuries sustained last summer in an autoaccident.

Some of Co-Lin’s sophomores have found a future at seniorcolleges and others are considering their options. OL James Redmonis going back to Mississippi State. OL Rayshon Autman went to MilesCollege in Birmingham. FB A.J. Holloway, LB Lewis Thompson and DBMarcus Foxworth are headed for West Alabama.

OL Brent Tospin and DB Josh Crawford are going to Nicholls (La.)State. QB Ryan Hayes is going to Mississippi College. He was astudent coach this past season. LB Charles Powell has signed withFort Valley State (Ga.).

Southern Cal. flexes No. 1 muscles


Southern Cal 55, Oklahoma 19.

Davis said he was surprised by the lopsided score in the OrangeBowl’s national championship game. The Southern Cal Trojanstrounced the proud Oklahoma squad.

“That (score) surprised me,” said Davis. “You can’t turn theball over against a good football team. Those three straight(Oklahoma) turnovers led to three USC touchdowns.”

Of course, Auburn coach Tommy Tuberville would love to see hisNo. 2 Auburn Tigers (13-0) play Southern Cal. The score would bemuch closer.

Write to sports editor Tom Goetz, c/o The DAILY LEADER, P.O.BOX 551, Brookhaven, MS 39602 or