Monday, April 30, 2012

Ex-JSU athlete Gary Lett talks about his book

Ex-JSU athlete Gary Lett talks about his book: When you live in football-frenzied Hattiesburg, Miss., and people learn you’re from Glencoe, Ala., the first question in the conversation is almost inevitable. Which are you for, Auburn or Alabama?

Saturday, April 28, 2012

AJ Davis, Monte Lewis and Calvin Middleton Get Paid

Congrats to three Gamecocks that did not get drafted, but signed priority free agent deals with NFL teams. AJ Davis is going to the Saints. Monte Lewis is going to the Redskins. Calvin Middleton is going to the Rams. Good luck to these Gamecocks as they head to camp.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Why some Sun Belt fans don't want JSU

Troy fans don't wants us in. South Alabama fans don't want us in. Middle Tennessee fans don't want us in. Arkansas State fans don't want us in but would love to go to the beach!!! In fact, there are quite a few fans from these Sun Belt schools that want no part of JSU. The reason why isn't what you would think, that JSU would be very competitive in the Sun Belt, but their reasoning has more to do with their belief that JSU isn't in a media market and having 6 FBS teams from Alabama empties the talent pool. Seriously? Last I checked, JSU targeted kids that seem like a great fit for JSU not because the kid is also looking at Troy or USA.

Get this- these SBC fans discredit the fact that JSU is right in between 2 very large media markets, Atlanta and Birmingham...both being less than 100 miles each way. To them, Anniston and Gadsden don't provide enough fan base to make JSU attractive to the Sun Belt. JSU ranked 12th in 2011 and 7th in 2010 in the FCS for home attendance in football at over 17,000 fans per game. Troy and USA averaged a little over 1,000 more folks than JSU, but again...we're not supposed to have a fan base worthy of keeping up with them, let alone big enough for the Sun Belt. Most fans from Troy don't value the old rivalry we used to have, only the folks from before 1990. Once they moved up, they started to focus on schools they would be playing in football. Our Marching Southerners keep the rivalry alive because it's part of the tradition, plus they still compete with Troy for band recruits. We all know who the better band is, and so does the Queen.

They believe that with JSU in the Sun Belt it would take away from the talent pool in Alabama. Since when was Alabama the only state with recruits? It's true that JSU's recruiting base is Alabama, Georgia, Florida, and Mississippi, but there are several kids from other states. That's just football. Have you seen the incredible job our coaches are doing in other states? These fans will also tell you that there is NO WAY, absolutely no chance, of JSU ever getting an invite to the Sun Belt. The claim they make is that the Sun Belt will never invite JSU unless major realignment takes place. One thing I can see happening is that JSU gets invited due to the CUSA feasting on the Sun Belt. If that's the case, Troy may leave for the CUSA and Troy won't have to worry about JSU anymore? Well, at least they won't have to worry about JSU having the bragging rights over them again. The playing field advantage went to Troy the last time we played them, as they had more scholarship players after moving into the FBS. By the way, it is true that the Sun Belt has a block on any of it's members going to an FCS school to play, and that's why Troy will not play us here. Imagine, just for a second, what it would be like if JSU beat Troy here in J'ville. Can you imagine the silence coming from the backyard of the plains?

There has also been plenty of talk regarding a new FBS conference being developed by JSU, App State, Ga Southern, West Florida, Chattanooga, UNC-Charlotte, and several other FBS ready programs. I'd like to know what the possibility of this happening is? There are plenty of those fans that would love to see it happen. I think most of the FCS teams around JSU wanting to move are getting weary of the arrogance from some of these conferences, if you will.

Troy fans claim their program has enough pull to keep JSU out of the Sun Belt. Pull? In a conference they claim is the ONLY conference JSU would possibly ever get an invite from, and only from acquisition? There are Sun Belt fans out there making their case against JSU, but there are plenty of other Sun Belt fans that want JSU because of what our athletics bring to the table. This I can promise; Troy will make every effort to keep JSU out of the Sun Belt unless 3-4 teams go. They would rather have App State and Ga Southern... App State is within the Asheville media market, even gets covered in Charlotte, and Ga Southern is in the Savannah media market. Both are small markets, but their teams are serious quality. Ga Southern is covered by Atlanta TV stations, but with Ga State around now that surely will start to drop off some. JSU resides in a perfect media market, not a dead one, and has been covered by Birmingham and Atlanta stations in the past. So that "no media market" argument holds no water. Let's see...Troy is in the Dothan/Montgomery media market? Wow...

JSU has a strong tradition of winning, in every sport. We win now, and we'll win when in FBS. We are going to be giving some teams fits early, and how would that look for an FCS team to come in make that kind of statement? These Sun Belt fans won't like it, for sure. What say you?

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Another OVC foe, another series win

Another OVC foe, another series win: Ben Waldrip had three hits and drove in a pair of runs to lead Jacksonville State to a 7-2 win over Murray State as the Gamecocks claimed their seventh straight Ohio Valley Conference series.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Random Notes

*A little more information on Alex Anderson, a true point guard from Memphis, that has signed with the Gamecocks. Anderson was a 3 Star rated player by Rivals and chose JSU over offers from EKU, MTSU and SEMO. Wait- Anderson chose JSU over an offer from a school in the mighty Sunbelt- that can't be right. *The Gamecocks have won their 5th OVC title in Women's Golf. Old timers will remember when Coach Hobbs was the assistant basketball coach, constantly exhorting the players to "work, work." *Does anyone know if the Gamecocks are going to get Derrick Lott, a defensive end that announced he was transferring from Georgia? Lott took a visit to JSU, but no word since then. *Speaking of football, no game looks bigger next year than the road trip to EKU. The Colonels have beaten the Gamecocks twice in a row and return a boatload of talent. While it is impossible to get over the manner in which the Gamecocks lost the game last year, EKU had a pretty good team. In the first game of the 2011 season, they led a very good Kansas State team very late in the game. Their loss in that game was similar to the Gamecocks loss at FSU a few years back. *While much has been written about the EKU collapse, the way the team went on the road following that gut wrenching loss to win their last two games is a great credit to them. It would have been easy to quit. Nevertheless, if there is one area the team must improve on next year its putting games away. The Gamecocks have squandered leads during the last two seasons to Tennessee Tech and EKU that have cost them dearly, but there have been numerous other games where JSU seemed to be in control and then let the game get uncomfortably close. The EIU, UT Martin and Murray games during the 2010 season were prime examples. Last year, Georgia State made a late game run. *After uncharacteristic slow starts, the JSU softball and baseball teams have rebounded nicely. The baseball team is only one game behind Austin Peay in the win column heading into a huge series with the Governors. The softball team is also sitting in second, but is a few games behind UT Martin.

Jacksonville State University - Gamecock Hoops Adds Memphis Prep Guard Anderson

Jacksonville State University - Gamecock Hoops Adds Memphis Prep Guard Anderson

Monday, April 23, 2012

Andrew Edge added to Great Lakes Loons (Dodgers) Roster

Former Jax State standout catcher, Andrew Edge, has been promoted to the Great Lakes Loons roster as of April 14th, 2012. Edge was selected in the 24th round of the 2010 MLB draft and played for the Odgen Raptors in 2011. The Loons are a minor league affiliate (Low A) of the Los Angeles Dodgers based in Midland, MI. Apparently, Edge has been with the team since the beginning of their season, but they officially cleared a spot for him and added him to the roster by sending a pitcher down to Odgen (rookie). On 4/17, Edge went 2 for 4 in his only game since joining the Loons. In Edge's last season at Jax State, he hit .330 with 11 hr's, 18 doubles, and 64 RBI's.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Gamecocks shine in final games of OVC series

Gamecocks shine in final games of OVC series: JACKSONVILLE — A team doesn’t become a perennial contender in the Ohio Valley Conference baseball race the way Jacksonville State has without coming through in the clutch.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Just the Facts: Could JSU Compete Athletically In the Sunbelt?

As a potential move is contemplated, many speculate over whether JSU could compete with the teams in the Sunbelt. Here is an analysis of games against SBC opponents in the last three seasons* (did not look at current year because seasons are ongoing):

Softball: JSU is 3-2. (Wins over Western Ky., MTSU and USA, Losses to MTSU and USA).

Baseball: JSU is 8-3. (Note- this record is padded heavily by dominance over MTSU).

Mens' Tennis: JSU is 1-2.

Womens' Tennis: JSU is 0-3.

Mens' Basketball: JSU is 0-1. (did not include victory over Georgia State because I do not think they were in SBC at the time).

Womens' Basketball: JSU is 1-2.

Soccer: JSU is 0-1.

Volleyball: JSU is 1-0. (did not include losses to Georgia State and North Texas because I do not think they were in the SBC at the time).

Football: No games. JSU is 2-0 against Georgia State, but it was pre-Sunbelt. JSU also defeated Arkansas State and Louisana Monroe the last time they played, but it has been several years.

Mens Golf, Womens' Golf, Rifle, Track and Cross Country: Did not analyze. In some instances, based on the format of the competitions it is difficult to determine who should go where.

Note- in all likelihood, a game or two could have been missed in looking back at the old schedules. If we missed a game, let us know and we will correct it.

Just The Facts - Could JSU Compete Attendance Wise in the Sunbelt?

There are dozens of issues related to whether JSU should move to the Sunbelt conference if the opportunity presents itself. A common refrain from the naysayers is that JSU doesn't have sufficient football fan support to make the move. Here are the facts:

JSU's Average Home attendance during 2010: 17,330 (#7 in FCS);
JSU's Average Home attendance during 2011: 17,226 (#12 in FCS);

Average Sunbelt Attendance during 2010: 17,969

Here are some selected team numbers:

Troy: 18,947;
Ark State: 17,394
Fla. Atl.: 14,025;
Western Kentucky: 14,577.

These are the facts. As far as opinion, it seems like JSU's numbers would increase if we played teams that actually sent some opposing fans unlike most of our OVC brethren. For instance, if JSU and Troy State played, Troy State might send a couple of thousand fans to the game.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

JSU trustees approve tennis, softball venue upgrades

JSU trustees approve tennis, softball venue upgrades: JACKSONVILLE — Jacksonville State took the next step toward upgrading its athletics facilities Monday when its board of trustees approved opening the bid process for improvements to the Gamecocks’ ...

Monday, April 16, 2012

J.D. Williams - Another Clay County Product Joins the Gamecocks

Innocuously listed on the JDay roster was JD Williams, a cornerback from Clay County. Follow this link to learn more about JD and his inspiring story. The comments to the article indicate the Gamecocks have added an outstanding young man to the team.

click here to go to the article.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

J Day Observations

It was a beautiful night for football in Jacksonville last night. Kudos to the athletic department for all of the improvements to the spring game experience: concessions, fairly accurate rosters, p.a. announcements. It may take us a while, but we get better and better.

Here are a few players that stood out at the game:

STEVEN COATES. Coates had a great game and looked perfectly comfortable running the offense. This gives the Gamecocks three options heading into next season.

WASHAUN EALEY. The offensive line was essentially the same for both offenses, but Ealey was the dominant runner in the game. He is a franchise player. It was also great to see that he fits in well with his teammates after a bit of an adjustment period last year. The Gamecocks showed one wildcat play- Ealey has a cannon for an arm. He is a franchise player.

GABRIEL CHAMBERS. Every time Gabriel touches a kick or punt return, you feel like he might take it to the house. We hope he returns every kick and punt next year.

JERRY SLOTA. Slota looked like a prototypical fullback and had several nice catches out of the backfield. It could be some good competition between Slota and Ladarius Ellis next fall.

Other notes:


It was exciting to see a few newcomers and redshirst get their first meaningful playing time. Clemson transfer Desmond Brown played a lot at safety. Juco transfer Ked Wolfe was a regular at defensive end wearing #3 (we think its a little early to be giving Calvin's # out). Brandon Bender had meaningful minutes in the defensive backfield. Finally, Jamaal Johnson, a highly touted player out of Piedmont played a lot of linebacker.

Speaking of linebackers, Michael Wittier had a fine game. He was the J Day quarterback two seasons ago. Look for him to make a major contribution on defense this year.


When will the jinx on offensive line injuries end? It looked like the following offensive linement were all out with injuries: Preston Hatcher, Johnny Ubi, Jr., Tee Harden, Tree Johnstone and we didn't see Matt Jones. The good news was last year's pre-season All OVC tackle, Odie Rush, was back. Likewise, it was great to see Blake Burks, of Hoover, out there and playing a little fullback as well. Former offensive lineman, Terrence Pendleton played defensive line.

Other notable players that did not participate in the game presumably because of injuries: Keginald Harris, Dimetrio Tyson, Denzell Bynum, Marques Ivory, Coty Blanchard (baseball), Gavin Ellis, Rashod Byers.

2012 Jacksonville State Pre J-Day Highlight

Coates leads White to win at J-Day

Coates leads White to win at J-Day: It’s not certain what Jacksonville State got out of its spring football game to take into the upcoming season this fall, but the Gamecocks sure got a lot for 2013 and 2014.

Friday, April 13, 2012

New, young Gamecocks make final spring showing

New, young Gamecocks make final spring showing: Jacksonville State fans making their way into the stadium tonight may be watching a watered-down version of a spring football game, but that doesn’t mean there won’t be anything to see.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

JSU In the Hunt for Big Time DE Transfer

Jacksonville State may be on the short list for Derrick Lott, a defensive end that is transferring from Georgia. Lott was a 4 Star Rivals/3 Star Scout prospect out of North Cobb High School. It is difficult to imagine a better fit for Lott. The Gamecocks lost four defensive linemen from last year's team, Big Texas Garrott, J. Wadley, Marquis George and Monte Lewis. He would also have the opportunity to train under Coach Davern Williams who has NFL experience.

If Lott comes to JSU, he will be reunited with former UGA teammate Washaun Ealey and will be following in the footsteps of Calvin Middleton another North Cobb product who had a great career at JSU.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Calvin Middleton JSU Highlights

Keep It Between The Ditches and In Your Britches.

Click Here for link

Wednesday, April 4, 2012


Former Handley standout Phillips out at Auburn, plans to transfer to JSU

Former Handley standout Phillips out at Auburn, plans to transfer to JSU: Jacksonville State is looking for a fullback, and Ladarious Phillips said he hopes to be the answer. The former Handley standout told The Star on Tuesday that he plans to complete paper work relat...