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No. 7 Co-Lin travels to Itawamba for season debut

WESSON – The No. 7 Copiah-Lincoln Wolfpack football team begins their nine game regular season with a lid-lifting trip to Fulton on Thursday as they take on the host Itawamba Indians.

Garrett Kruczek

Garrett Kruczek

The Wolfpack must replace nearly 6,000 yards of total offense lost to graduation as they debut new starters in nearly every position on the field. Freshman quarterback Garrett Kruczek steps in to lead a Co-Lin offense that has only three players on the roster that scored a touchdown in 2014. Key for offensive success will be a line that returns four experience sophomores. The Wolfpack defense has looked to be fast to the ball in preseason camp, which is a must in the MACJC where the top teams operate at a hurry-up pace. Linebacker Zachary Williams returns to lead the defense after being named MACJC All-State and making a team high 77 tackles in 2014.

In Itawamba, the Wolfpack will see a very familiar foe. The Indians visited Wesson on Thursday, Aug. 28 in the 2014 season opener, a game that saw Co-Lin cruise to a 37-13 win. Following the game wide receiver Donald Gray was named MACJC Offensive State Player of the Week and NJCAA National Offensive Player of the Week. Defensive lineman Demond Tucker was also named MACJC State Defensive Player of the Week for his efforts against the Indians.

Zachary Williams

Zachary Williams

This will the fourth consecutive season for Co-Lin and Itawamba to meet as the Wolfpack also winners in 2013 (48-7 in Wesson) and 2012 (17-14 in Fulton). The Indians are under the direction of second year head coach Sean Cannon. Cannon has 26 sophomore returnees from a 4-5 team in 2014. Sophomore quarterback Kwadra Griggs is Southern Miss commit and will be one of the most experienced and athletic signal callers in the MACJC.

The Co-Lin roster may be light on experience, but the Wolfpack feature several Division I transfers such as Dayall Harris (WR, Ole Miss), Jacen Murphy (WR, East Carolina), Kent Flowers (OL, Mississippi State), and Paul James (DL, University of Illinois).

Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. at Eaton Field in Fulton. The Voice of the Wolfpack, Ken Hollingsworth, can be heard with the call of the game on WMJU 104.3 in Brookhaven.