Jamboree generates a football state of mind

Published 8:37 am Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Football season is finally here. Conversation about fantasy football, the SEC West, the Red Carpet Bowl and Alcorn State have resumed in the lives of Vicksburg residents. Let the sports world rejoice and celebrate as lives return to normal.

Friday’s football jamboree at Vicksburg High School put me in a place I haven’t been in five years. I forgot how exciting high school football is and how much it means to alumni and the city. Coach Marcus Rogers and his staff did a heck of a job to come out with the victory against Jefferson County and looked good doing it.

When I spoke with VHS running back Tim Jackson a few weeks ago, one of the things he said that makes him good at his position is his vision on the field. Rogers also spoke on how Jackson uses his size to his advantage, making it harder for the defense to get hold of him coming out of the backfield.

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I was a witness to this as Jackson exploded through holes for big gains. While this might have been just an exhibition, I look forward to watching the Gators progress this season.

On Saturday I was reintroduced to the close knit world of HBCU athletics when I covered Alcorn’s athletic meet and greet.

I attended Clark Atlanta University — or more infamously known as Atlanta A&T from Nick Cannon’s “Drumline” — my freshman year of undergrad but never went to a football game. My first college game wasn’t until I transferred to Alabama and saw the Tide beat Colorado State. Although I never attended a game at CAU, I was able to hear them from my suite, which was right beside the stadium. The games were filled with proud Panther alums, especially for homecoming.

Being in a sea of Alcorn purple and gold was electrifying and refreshing. For every “Phyllis the Alabama fan,” there’s a “Mama Brave” of HBCU’s to stand up and remind every naysayer why it isn’t a good idea to mess with her school.

It was also refreshing to see Alcorn coach Jay Hopson embraced by the school he’s dedicated a lot of time and effort to the past four years. Stories were shared about Hopson unloading equipment from the team bus and doing things outside his job description like buying Gatorade for his team.

Football has a crazy way of bringing fans together as well as tearing families apart. America goes through these emotions every year and the love for the sport grows every season, but can you blame them?