Thursday, December 1, 2016
5 questions Jackson State faces this offseason
JACKSON, Mississippi -- Year 1 of the Tony Hughes era is in the books at Jackson State. The rebuilding process he set in motion at this time last year now faces a crucial off-season.
Will he be able to address the problems that led to the Tigers’ 3-8 finish? Will they be able to get over the hump and beat somebody other than Arkansas-Pine Bluff, Mississippi Valley State and Texas Southern?
A lot of that depends on whether or not Hughes and company can address these five burning questions:
The Tigers had 25 seniors on the roster, and they made up 14 of the 22 starters on both sides of the football. Each position group had one or two leaders – Markus Cook and Christian Marshall on the offensive line, Josh Bates for running backs and Javancy Jones for the defensive line, etc.
The coaches can only do so much from the sidelines, and with all those guys moving on, it falls on the eight juniors who started games in 2016 to be the team’s next leaders.
Quarterback Jarin Morikawa, receiver Jevon Floyd and offensive guard Vincent Hunter could all take leadership roles on offense, and defensive lineman Keontre Anderson can lead by example if he just recreates his remarkable 2016 season. The junior finished with a ridiculous 25.5 tackles for a loss and nine quarterback sacks.