|EMCC Lions reel in all-region and all-state football honors|
SCOOBA – Readying for their school-first state championship game appearance, several members of East Mississippi’s North Division championship team have been accorded 2009 NJCAA All-Region 23 and Mississippi Association of Community & Junior Colleges (MACJC) All-North State football honors.
Highlighted by preseason NJCAA All-America quarterback Randall Mackey repeating as the NJCAA’s Region 23 Most Valuable Player, a total of 14 EMCC players garnered either All-Region 23 or All-North State accolades from a collective vote of the state’s head junior college football coaches.
Head coach Buddy Stephens’ 9-1 EMCC Lions, ranked third in the current JC Grid-Wire National Top 25 and seventh in the current NJCAA/JCFootball.com poll, will play host to the 9-1 and two-time defending state champion Mississippi Gulf Coast Bulldogs Saturday afternoon on the Scooba campus. Kickoff at EMCC’s Sullivan-Windham Field is set for 2 p.m.
Along with EMCC’s Mackey collecting a second straight Region 23 MVP award, sophomore offensive tackle Quartney Cox also repeated as an NJCAA All-Region 23 performer. The former West Point High School product was also tabbed by the state’s head coaches as the MVP among the North Division’s offensive linemen. This year, the veteran tandem has been joined on the all-region squad by sophomore wide receiver Lance Lewis and freshman return specialist British Footman.
A sophomore from Port Sulphur, La., Mackey presently leads the NJCAA in pass completion percentage (174-of-258 for 67.4%) for the season, along with ranking third nationally in passing yards per game (266.4), tied for fourth with 22 touchdown passes, and third in total offense with an average of 311.4 yards per contest. The 6-foot, 185-pound signal-caller has thrown for 5,216 yards and 46 touchdowns during his two-year EMCC career.
One of nine different Lion players with at least 14 receptions on the year, Lewis currently ranks sixth nationally with 737 receiving yards and is tied for third with 11 touchdown receptions. The former football and basketball standout at Concord (N.C.) High School has compiled 100 or more receiving yards in four of his last six outings, including a season-high 165 yards in last week’s playoff victory over Jones County. Averaging 19.4 yards on 38 receptions this year, four of Lewis’ touchdown catches have been for 70 yards or more.
A first-year player from Tallahassee, Fla., Footman was named to this year’s NJCAA All-Region 23 contingent as a kick return specialist. The freshman speedster is averaging 15.3 yards per punt return in 2009, including two touchdowns, as well as 30.6 yards per kickoff return, including an 81-yarder.
Defensively, East Mississippi put preseason NJCAA All-Americans Claude Davis and Alvin Ellis on this year’s MACJC All-North State First Team. A 6-foot-4, 250-pound defensive end from Lakeland, Fla., Davis has registered a team-high 10.5 sacks and 10 other tackles for loss on the year. Ellis, a former Columbus High School standout, leads all EMCC tacklers with 88 total stops as a repeat first-team all-state selection at linebacker.
EMCC also had a total of eight players – four on offense and four on defense – earn second-team status on the MACJC’s 2009 All-North State squad. Offensively, sophomore wide receivers Bill Franks of State Line and Stephon Johnson of Gulfport rank first and third on the EMCC team with 40 and 31 catches, respectively. Sophomore running back Pat Shed of Starkville garnered second-team honors for the second straight year in leading the Lions in rushing again this season (765 yards in 2009 and 772 in 2008). Freshman center Billy Autrey of Columbus was also voted to the North’s second team.
On the other side of the ball, defensive end Jermayne Lett of Moss Point was named to the North’s second-team unit after ranking second on the EMCC club with 80 total tackles, including 9.5 sacks and 18 other tackles for loss. Freshman linebacker Dujuan Brown (Miami, Fla.) was joined on the second team by Lion defensive backs Anthony Hines of Starkville and Izauea Lanier (Gordo, Ala.), who top East Mississippi with six and three interceptions, respectively, on the year.
|Last Updated ( Friday, 06 November 2009 )|
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