Three football Bobcats sign with senior colleges

Written By: Shawn Wansley
Email Address: shawn.wansley@jcjc.edu
Date Submitted: 2011-02-02 16:09:38

 By Shawn Wansley

JCJC Sports Information Director

ELLISVILLE – One of the goals of a junior college football program is to provide an opportunity for players to receive a scholarship to a senior college.

Three Jones County Junior College Bobcats were able to achieve that goal on Wednesday morning during National Signing Day.

Brandon Bender and Jeremy Pierce signed with Division I programs, while Stacy Graham is headed to a Division II school.

Bender, a 6-foot-3, 285-pound offensive lineman from Laurel, signed with the University of Louisiana-Lafayette, while Pierce, a 6-foot-5, 295-pound offensive lineman from Heidelberg, is headed to Troy University. Graham, a 6-foot-4, 270-pound tight end, who also played offensive tackle, signed with the University of West Alabama.

Pierce was a first-team All-Region 23 and All-MACJC performer in 2010, while Bender was a second-team All-MACJC selection.

JCJC head football coach Eddie Pierce is proud of the group.

“Those guys are gone and we are going to miss them,” he said. “But we are happy for those guys for getting a chance to further their education and to play some more football.”

The three signees from Wednesday join six other Bobcats who signed scholarships earlier in the recruiting process.

Defensive end Ryan Robinson (6-5, 255) of Mill Creek High School in Buford, Ga., inked with Oklahoma State University, while defensive tackle Jo’nal White (6-1, 295) of Ruston High School in Ruston, La., is back home at Louisiana Tech.

Bay Springs running back Justin Gaines (5-10, 180) and Oak Grove linebacker Kewon Hunter (6-1, 200) signed with Belhaven University in Jackson. Graham will join Enterprise offensive lineman Caleb McGruder (6-5, 300) at West Alabama in Livingston, while Macon, Ga., wide receiver Rashad Wynes (6-2, 210) of Warner Robins High School signed with Albany State (Ga.).

Robinson was named the Most Valuable Lineman in the MACJC South Division and was a first-team, All-South Division selection. Wynes was selected to play in the annual MACJC All-Star Football Classic in December.

“We take a lot of pride, as a staff, in getting those guys in and getting them ready to move on to that next level,” Coach Pierce said. “This is a great recruiting tool because we can say, ‘Here is where we are sending our guys.’ Through the past years, we’ve sent players all the way from West Virginia to Oregon State.

“Jones County Junior College has a great track record for getting kids to the next level.”

This past season on the Division I level, former Bobcat defensive end Tyrunn Walker started all 13 games as a junior for Tulsa and helped the Golden Hurricane to a 10-3 record and a 62-35 victory over Hawai’i in the Sheraton Hawai’i Bowl. Ex-Bobcat wide receiver Tebiarus Gill set a R+L Carriers Bowl record with three touchdown receptions to help lead Troy to a 48-21 victory over Ohio University.

In addition, four former Bobcats – center Darrell Leopold, guard Chase Sherman, defensive tackle Robbie Mayers and punter Tyler Caldwell – help Delta State University reach the championship game of the NCAA Division II playoffs. Leopold, Mayers and Caldwell are from Laurel and Sherman is from D’Iberville.

 

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