Granville now center of attention

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, September 10, 2008

JACKSON — Coming into his sophomore season at Millsaps, former St, Aloysius lineman Jordan Granville wanted to get on the field more.

In the spring, the defensive tackle saw where the Majors were a little thin at center after the returning starter decided to give up his senior year of football. Granville volunteered to take a shot at the position.

It was a move that worked out well for both Granville and the Majors. In Saturday night’s “Backyard Brawl” at Harper Davis Field, Granville opened the game as the starting center and did not depart until the Majors had built a commanding 42-6 lead over rival Mississippi College early in the fourth quarter.

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“My move to center was due to the fact I didn’t get a lick of playing time all season,” Granville said after the Majors’ season opening thumping of the Choctaws. Granville, who played his senior season at St Al after transferring from North Hagerstown, Md., was a defensive tackle in a handful of JV games for the Majors.

Granville wanted more, and a move to center would be required.

“I saw where we had lost some depth at center and asked if I could try it. It worked out,” Granville said.

Senior defensive end Marcus Stokes, a former Vicksburg High star, said the switch helped solidify the offensive line.

“Jordan’s come a long way in the last year. With him going to the offense, he’s become a facilitator for the team. He’s worked hard,” Stokes said.

The Majors, paced by their rebuilt offensive line, allowed quarterback Juan Joseph to carve up the Choctaws for 15 straight completions in the first half that turned a 3-0 deficit into a 28-3 lead. Joseph hit on three TD passes of 6, 63 and 22 yards.

Getting the ball to Joseph on the shotgun snaps was Granville’s primary duty.

“I had so many nightmares about my snaps to Juan. You just dread seeing it going over his head,” Granville said.

Something like that did happen to his alma mater at St. Al in its season opener. Two snaps went over backup quarterback Regan Nosser’s head for a pair of costly turnovers.

“I heard about that. They lost like 80 yards or so,” Granville said.

All of Granville’s snaps to Joseph were on the money and the senior quarterback went on to complete 21 of 30 passes for 263 yards and three touchdowns.

Granville’s blocking assignments were pretty easy. MC had very little pass rush from its down front. Middle linebacker Quartez Ashmore, also a Vicksburg High graduate, could not get through either.

“They could not get any pass rush at all. Juan was able to get into a pretty good rhythm,” said Granville, who mainly got to triple team MC’s outmanned noseguard.

“We had fun picking on that guy,” Granville said.

It added to a big win for the Majors, who beat MC for the first time since 2005.

“First in the series for our seniors, so it was a good win,” Granville said.