Thursday, July 31, 2014

2015 WCU Basketball Prospect - Craig Randall, II

Craig Randall, II
Position:  Point Guard

Hometown:  Phoenix, AZ
High School:  Shadow Mountain HS
Height:  6'4"
Weight:  170
AAU Team:  Ohio Basketball Club

Ratings:  Scout - 2 Stars /  VC - 2 Stars


Scholarship offers - In addition to Western Carolina, Randall has offers from College of Charleston, Louisiana Tech, Cleveland State, Drexel, Oakland, Robert Morris, Akron, St. Joseph's, Kent State, Northeastern, La Salle, & UTEP.

Randle played his first two high school seasons at Girard High School, near Youngstown, OH, but transferred prior to his junior season to Medina High School. Randell averaged 23.5 points per game as a sophomore, which earned him 2nd Team All-Northeast Inland District.  Then, Less than two months after Medina boys coach Anthony Stacey resigned, All-Ohio guard Craig Randall transferred to Shadow Mountain High School in Phoenix, AZ.


Selected as the #31 top Arizona HS basketball prospect, "A natural point guard, one of the top-rated players in his class in the country. Moved in from Medina, Ohio, where he gained scholarship offers from Akron, Cleveland State and Louisiana Tech."


 Highlights -

 

                                
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Preseason Preview: Western Carolina Catamounts

The preseason previews of both the SoCon and Big South football schools continue on the P&P Sports Network.  Today it's Western Carolina in the box. Here's a brief sample of today's article....

Last Year: 2-9 overall, 1-6 SoCon  (2013)

P&P Power Ranking#8
Season Opener: Saturday, August 30th, at the University South Florida (USF)Raymond James Stadium. Tampa, FL @ 7 PM (ESPN3)
prove your purple
In 2014, a very young Catamount football team returns a total of 50 letterman, which includes 20 starters (10 offense, 8 defense and 2 specialists). The Catamounts are young enough they return only six (6) seniors on the roster.
While young, these returning letterman are experienced. Many of the starters and players on the two deep roster were thrown into the fire as freshmen in Coach Speir’s initial season in Cullowhee, only two years ago.  
Read the entire preseason preview on the Palmetto & Pine Sports Network 


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30 Days 'till Kickoff - #30 A.J. McKoy

It's now 30 days until kickoff of Catamount football at the Raymond James Stadium, home of the University of South Florida Bulls on August 30th in in Tampa, FL.

To help pass those long summer days until football season starts, and hopefully get the Catamount faithful more excited about the upcoming season, we'll continue the 100 day football countdown each day until kickoff day.

Today we'll continue to highlight defensive backs.

#30 A.J. McKoy


Class: Junior
Hometown: Council, N.C.
High School: East Bladen HS
Height / Weight: 5-10 / 175
Position: DB



2013 (Sophomore): Saw action in all 12 games as a reserve on defense or on special teams ... Finished the year with four tackles, posting tackle assists in four different games ... Returned three kickoffs for a total of 53 yards including a long of 25 yards - all at ACC-foe, Virginia Tech ... Intercepted a pass and returned it 21 yards, adding four tackles in WCU's annual Spring Game.

2012 (Freshman): Played in 10 of WCU's 11 games on both special teams and in the defensive secondary ... Finished with five tackles on the year including four solo stops ... On kickoff returns, tallied 215 yards on 11 returns including a long of 31 yards at The Citadel ... Recorded his first collegiate tackle on the road at Marshall.

Prior to Western Carolina: Two-way player that broke the East Bladen High career rushing (4,715 yards) and touchdown (87) records ... Was a three-time all-conference and all-county selection, garnering all-area plaudits his final two seasons ... Helped the Eagles post a 48-9 overall record including three Waccamaw Conference championships ... Caught 69 passes for 1,273 yards and 12 scores ... Played in the state championship game as a true freshman, joining the varsity team after eight games ... Gained over 1,000 yards for the jayvee squad ... Also played baseball as a prep, earning both all-conference and all-county accolades in the outfield.

Personal: Full name is Glenn A. McKoy ... Is the son of Glenn McKoy and Latisha Wooten ... Has two younger siblings ... His grandfather, Glenn McKoy Sr., coached high school football for 27 years and is a member of the Fayetteville State Football Hall of Fame ... His grandmother is Phyllis McKoy.

Courtesy WCU Athletic Media Relations

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

2015 WCU Basketball Prospect - Steven Santa Ana

Steven Santa Ana
Position:  Shooting Guard


Hometown:  Charlotte, NC
High School:  Ardrey Kell High School
Height:  6'4"
Weight:  185 lbs
AAU Team:  Team Heat (Charlotte)

3 Star Scout &  VC ranking



Steven has scholarship offers from Western Carolina, as well as Elon, Winthrop, American University, Lipscomb, Bucknell, the Citadel, and Radford.  He is reveiving interest from VMI, Murray State, Louisville and Tennessee.

Quote from PSB Select:  "Steven is the type of kid every coach loves. He’s tough, extremely hard working, and can shoot the lights out. He has the ability to take the ball all the way to the hoop, pull up for a mid range jumper, or extend all the way out to NBA range and knock it down with consistency. Steven’s a very unselfish player and willing passer who has a knack for the game and high basketball IQ. On the defensive end, Steven is quick and physical and is able to put himself in the right position to be an extremely solid defender. Last season he led Ardrey Kell to the quarterfinals of states."


ACCOMPLISHMENTS:
 •1st Team All Conference
 •1st Team All District
 •All Time Ardrey Kell Leader in points, rebounds, steals
 •NC Top 80


Highlights



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31 Days 'till Kickoff - #31 Devonté Baker

It's now 31 days until kickoff of Catamount football at the Raymond James Stadium, home of the University of South Florida Bulls on August 30th in in Tampa, FL.

To help pass those long summer days until football season starts, and hopefully get the Catamount faithful more excited about the upcoming season, we'll continue the 100 day football countdown each day until kickoff day. Today we'll continue to highlight defensive backs.

#31 Devonté Baker



Class: Freshman
Hometown: Spring Lake, N.C.
High School: Pine Forest HS
Height / Weight: 5-9 / 160
Position: DB

Prior to Western Carolina: Played both wide receiver and defensive back as a prep ... Named All-Mid South Conference and a team MVP as a senior, guiding the Trojans to a 10-2 record and NCHSAA playoff berth ... Finished 2013 with 39 tackles as a senior ... Recorded five interceptions - tied for the fourth-most in Cumberland County - and returned three for touchdowns ... On offense, caught 18 passes for 198 yards and a touchdown while also rushing 21 times for 143 yards and three scores ... Also ran track as a prep ... High school coach was Bill Sochovka.

Personal: Is the son of Wayne Baker and Keisha Armstrong and stepmother, Sherry Baker ... Has a sister, Tamia Morgan.

Courtesy WCU Athletic Media Relations

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

2015 WCU Basketball Prospect - Gage Ellis

Gage Ellis
Position:  Shooting Guard


Hometown:  Greenville, SC
High School:  Legacy Charter
Class:  2015
Height:  6'4"
Weight:  175 lbs





Ellis has offers from Western Carolina, as well as the Citadel, Gardner-Webb, Tenn Tech, UNCW & Radford. He has also drawn interest from App State and Coastal Carolina.

3 Star Scout ranking

Quote by NextUpRecruits.com -  "Ellis is a polished guard that scores in a variety of ways. He is a excellent catch and shoot guard, but has the ability to put it on the floor and create his own shot. Gage isn’t unbelievably athletic, but showed this weekend that his athleticism has improved. He was best when attacking the rim the in transition as he had several finishes through contact."


View highlight film of Gage Ellis




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2015 WCU Basketball Prospect - Malcolm Smith

Malcolm Smith
Position: Shooting Guard

Hometown:  Delray Beach Florida   (Baltimore, MD)
Height: 6'4"
Weight: 195 lbs
Class: 2015
High School:  Elev8 Sports Academy
AAU team:  VA Stars Elite



Smith currently has offers from both Western Carolina and George Washington.  He is drawing interest from DePaul, George Mason, GT, Richmond, VCU, & Florida Gulf Coast.

Short highlight video



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32 Days 'till Kickoff - #32 Chris Seaborn

It's now 32 days until kickoff of Catamount football at the Raymond James Stadium, home of the University of South Florida Bulls on August 30th in in Tampa, FL.

To help pass those long summer days until football season starts, and hopefully get the Catamount faithful more excited about the upcoming season, we'll continue the 100 day football countdown each day until kickoff day.

#32 Chris Seaborn




Class: Freshman
Hometown: Atlanta, Ga.
High School: B.E.S.T. Academy
Height / Weight: 6-2 / 200
Position: DB

Prior to Western Carolina: Played both sides of the ball as a prep including as a linebacker on defense with time at quarterback and wide receiver on offense ... Recorded 45 tackles including 28 solo stops with two interceptions as a senior ... On offense, scored six touchdowns including four receiving and two on the ground ... Finished with 16 receptions for 247 yards ... Earned first team offense All-Region honors in 4-AAA as a receiver in 2013 ... Also ran track as a prep ... High school coach was Josh Moore.

Personal: Is the son of Cathy Seaborn.

Courtesy WCU Athletic Media Relations

Monday, July 28, 2014

33 Days 'till Kickoff - #33 Coleman Cunningham

It's now 33 days until kickoff of Catamount football at the Raymond James Stadium, home of the University of South Florida Bulls on August 30th in in Tampa, FL.

To help pass those long summer days until football season starts, and hopefully get the Catamount faithful more excited about the upcoming season, we'll continue the 100 day football countdown each day until kickoff day.

 #33 Coleman Cunningham




Class: RS Sophomore
Hometown: Cornelia, Ga.
High School: Habersham Central HS
Height / Weight: 5-9 / 185
Position: LB

2013 (Redshirt Freshman): Played in three games as a reserve before suffering a season-ending knee injury ... Made his collegiate debut on Oct. 5 at Chattanooga ... Was not credited with any stats.

2012: Redshirted.

Prior to Western Carolina: Was a two-time All-Region selection, garnering honorable mention as a junior and second team plaudits as a senior ... Posted a career-high 20 tackles - the third most in a single-game in school history - in a game against Loganville ... Was also named All-Region as a wrestler both his junior and senior year, finishing as the state 4-A runner-up in 2012.

Personal: Full name is Coleman Samuel Cunningham ... Is the son of Stuart and Luanne Cunningham ... Has two siblings; Lindy and Lauren.

Courtesy WCU Athletic Media Relations

Sunday, July 27, 2014

34 Days 'till Kickoff - #34 Corey Holloway

It's now 34 days until kickoff of Catamount football at the Raymond James Stadium, home of the University of South Florida Bulls on August 30th in in Tampa, FL.

To help pass those long summer days until football season starts, and hopefully get the Catamount faithful more excited about the upcoming season, we'll continue the 100 day football countdown each day until kickoff day.

#34 Corey Holloway


Class: Freshman

Hometown: Atlanta, Ga.

High School: Eagle's Landing HS

Height / Weight: 5-10 / 215

Position: RB






Prior to Western Carolina: Was a four-year varsity letter winner in football ... Is a physical runner with good vision that amassed over 1,300 all-purpose yards including 1,093 on the ground en route to earning his team's MVP award as a senior, helping Eagle's Landing High record a school-record for wins ... Led the team with 10 rushing touchdowns as a part of first team All-Region honors at running back ... Recorded 200 receiving yards as a senior ... Also saw time on defense at linebacker over his final two seasons, tallying 44 tackles including 34 solo stops ... Earned the Good Citizenship Award from the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution ... As a junior, rushed for 1,449 yards and nine touchdowns ... High school coach was Joe Teknipp.

Personal: Full name is Corey Justin Holloway ... Is the son of G. Reginald and Donna J.L. Holloway ... Is one of four children in the Holloway family.

Courtesy WCU Athletic Media Relations

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Looking at Game 11, VMI

Who: VMI Keydets

When: November 15, 2014 at 2:00 pm (EST)

Where: Bob Waters Field at E.J. Whitmire Stadium, Cullowhee, NC

Series History:  Western Carolina currently leads the series 17-3. The Cats and Keydets first played in 1978 and last played in 2002, with the Cats owning an eleven game winning streak over VMI. Western Carolina was the last SoCon team the Keydets played in Lexington before their departure from the Southern Conference.

Their coach:  Sparky Woods  - Sparky Woods enters his seventh season as head coach of the VMI football program, and continues to make his mark throughout the program by implementing the philosophy and knowledge attained over an impressive coaching career. Catamount fans might also remember Woods as the head coach of Appalachian State from 1984 -1988.

Last year’s record:   2-10 overall,  1-4 Big South

How they got there:  The Keydets opened the season on the road at CAA's Richmond, dropping the opener to the Spiders, 0-34.  The following week, VMI returned home and picked up a win against Glenville State, 34-27. Remaining at home, the Keydets were beaten the following week by North Greenville, 24-37.  VMI then traveled to Virginia, picking up their third loss of the season, 0-49.  Robert Morris of the Northeast Conference was next to visit Lexington, and pulled out an overtime victory, 21-37. Entering conference play in the Big South, Charleston Southern was next up in Lexington, and the Bucs were able to pull out a hard fought win, 17-25. The Keydets then went on the road for three straight Big South games, at PC, at CCU, and at Liberty.  The Keydets fell at PC, 35-49, the traveled to Number 3 nationally ranked Coastal Carolina, CCU had little trouble with the Keydets, winning 27-66. In the final conference road game at Liberty, the Keydets kept it close, losing to the Flames, 7-17.  The road weary VMI team returned to Lexington for the final BS home game of the season, and the final game against a Big South opponent in Lexington before their departure to the SoCon.  The Bulldogs of Gardner-Webb traveled to Lexington, and fell victim to the Keydets, 27-9.  The following week, renewing their rivalry, VMI traveled to Charleston to meet the Citadel, falling 10-31.  To close out the season, Bucknell of the Patriot League traveled to Lexington, winning 35-23 over the Keydets.

The last game vs. VMI:  Nov 2, 2002  -  Western Carolina quarterbacks Pat Cilento and Brian Gaither combined for 350 yards passing and four touchdowns to lead Western Carolina past VMI, 35-23, in the final Southern Conference game played at Alumni Memorial Field in Lexington. The Catamount win was the 11th straight for Western over the Keydets and snapped VMI's three-game win streak. With the win, WCU improves to 5-5, 3-4 in the Southern Conference, while VMI fell to 5-5 and 2-4 in the SoCon.

Letterwinners returning/lost:  34 - 20
Offense:  15 - 9
Defense: 18 - 9
Special Teams: 1 - 2

Starters Returning/Loss:  14 - 10

Offensive starters - Returning/Lost:   6 - 5

Defensive starters - Returning/Lost:  7 - 4

Specialist Returning/Lost:  1 - 1

2013 Statistics:
Scoring:  19.6 points per game
Rushing Offense:  89 yards per game
TDs rushing:  9 rushing touchdowns
Passing Offense:  238.8 yards per game
TDs passing:  20 passing touchdowns
Total Offense:  327.8 yards per game
Fumbles-Lost:  22 - 11
Penalties-Yards:  76 - 597 yards (49.8 yds per game)
On-side kicks:  0 - 4
3rd Down Conversions:  58 of 167  (35%)
4th Down Conversions:  6 of 16  (38%)
Field Goals - Attempts:  9 of 16
Red-Zone Scores:  20 of 29  (69%)
Red-Zone Touchdowns:  16 of 29  (55%)

Losses/Weaknesses:
Key Losses -  Eric Koenbrock - QB, Patrick Goulden & Will Lucas - OL, James Rogers - WR, Mario Thompson - TE, Weston Reber & Ty Garvin - LB

Strengths:  At the SoCom Media Day, the Keydets were picked to finish in eighth place.  VMI had one player selected on the all conference team, Andrew Marcotte, senior offensive line.  Redshirt Sophomore Hayden Alford (QB) will probably get the starting nod, Alford  replaces starter Eric Koenbrock, and played in 4 games, completing 8 passes for 98 yards and no interceptions.
Returning Leaders:  Derrick Ziglar - RB, Deon Watts - RB, Same Patterson - WR,

Stat leaders -
Rushing -
Derrick Ziglar  148 attempts, 768 yards, 69.8 avg game,  5 tds
Deon Watts  56 attempts,  182 yards,  16.5 avg. game,  1  td

Passing -
Hayden Alford  8 completions, 13 attempts  98 yards

Receiving -
Sam Patterson  38 receptions,  646 yards,  17.0 avg,  8 tds
Derrick Ziglar  25 receptions, 336 yards,  13.4 avg,  1  td

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35 Days 'till Kickoff - #35 Keion Crossen

It's now 35 days until kickoff of Catamount football at the Raymond James Stadium, home of the University of South Florida Bulls on August 30th in in Tampa, FL.

To help pass those long summer days until football season starts, and hopefully get the Catamount faithful more excited about the upcoming season, we'll continue the 100 day football countdown each day until kickoff day.

#35 Keion Crossen



Class: Freshman
Hometown: Garysburg, N.C.
High School: Northampton County HS
Height / Weight: 5-10 / 160
Position: DB







Prior to Western Carolina: A four-sport athlete who played quarterback and in the defensive secondary as a safety on the football gridiron ... Rushed for 1,752 yards and 20 touchdowns on offense and recorded a team-high seven interceptions as a senior... Recorded a 419 yard rushing performance with four touchdowns in a win over Granville Central ... Named N.C. Preps 1-A All-State as a defensive back ... Earned "best camper" title at the Steve Wilkes Defensive Back Camp ... Also ran track as a prep, finishing second in the state at the 1-A level in the 400-meter dash ... High school coach was George Privott.

Personal: Is the son of Winnie Webb.

Courtesy WCU Athletic Media Relations

Friday, July 25, 2014

WCU Head Coach Mark Speir at SoCon Media Day


video

36 Days 'till Kickoff - #36 Richard Sigmon

It's now 36 days until kickoff of Catamount football at the Raymond James Stadium, home of the University of South Florida Bulls on August 30th in in Tampa, FL.

To help pass those long summer days until football season starts, and hopefully get the Catamount faithful more excited about the upcoming season, we'll continue the 100 day football countdown each day until kickoff day.

Today we'll highlight kickers.

#36 Richard Sigmon


Class: Senior
Hometown: Mount Holly, N.C.
High School: East Gaston HS
Height / Weight: 5-10 / 185
Position: K/P



2013 Junior: Saw action in all 12 of the team's games, handling primary placekicking duties including kickoffs, field goals and PATs ... Averaged nearly 54 yards per kickoff on 48 attempts with six touchbacks in the fall ... His 53 points scored was second on the WCU squad and ranked seventh in the SoCon in terms of kick scoring, averaging 4.4 points per game including 23 made PATs and 10 made field goals ... Finished 10-of-13 (76.9%) on field goals, third in the league among kickers with 10-or-more attempts ... His 0.83 field goals per game average ranked him fifth in the SoCon ... Was a perfect 8-for-8 on field goals inside of 39 yards ... Earned SoCon Special Teams Player of the Week - and honorable mention at place kicker from the College Football Performance Awards (CFPA) - in the days after WCU's memorable Homecoming Day victory over Elon that snapped the program's 26-game winless drought in league play ... Opened the game's scoring with a 41-yard field goal before connecting on all three PAT's including the game-tying boot at the end of regulation ... Then, in the extra session, he kicked the game-winning 39-yard field goal ... Connected on a career-long 49-yard field goal at Auburn ... Finished 23-of-26 on PATs ... Named to the 16th annual Football Championship Subdivision Athletics Directors Association (FCS ADA) All-Star Team - the fifth Catamount to earn the recognition since 2000 ... Named to the 2013 Southern Conference Fall Academic All-Conference team and to the 2013-14 Southern Conference Honor Roll ... Booted a 22-yard field goal in WCU's annual Spring Game.

2012 (Sophomore): Played in all 11 games as the team's primary placekicker while also handling kickoffs ... Kicked off 49 times for 2,714 yards with seven touchbacks and a 55.4 yard per kick average ... Finished 6-of-12 on field goals including a career-long 40-yarder at Marshall ... Hit 23 of his 25 PAT attempts, totaling 43 points on the season to rank second on the team ... Booted a career-high two field goals in the season opener against Mars Hill ... Twice connected on four PATs in a game against both Mars Hill and at The Citadel ... Credited with two tackles ... Named to the 2012 Southern Conference Fall Academic All-Conference team and to the 2012-13 Southern Conference Honor Roll.

2011 (Freshman): Saw action in all 11 games on special teams, handling kickoffs ... Kicked 41 times for 2,161 yards with one touchback, averaging 52.7 yards per kick ... Booted two out-of-bounds ... Kicked off a career-high nine times in the home-opener against Mars Hill ... Named to WCU's Dean's List.

Prior to Western Carolina: A two-time All-Mega-7 Conference selection who garnered first team Gaston Gazette honors as a senior ... Was named Dynamic Performance Sports 2010 Kicker of the Year... Finished his prep career 16-for-21 on field goal attempts including four field goals of over 40 yards during his senior season ... Held a 38-yard punting average as a senior ... Went 6-for-7 on field goals as a junior with his lone miss of the season blocked ... Was a 4.5 star kicker by Chris Sailer kicking exposure camp ... Additionally played club soccer for the North Meck Soccer Club for seven years.

Personal: Full name is Richard DeWitt Sigmon ... Is the son of Mike and Jeannie Sigmon.

Courtesy WCU Athletic Media Relations

Thursday, July 24, 2014

37 Days 'till Kickoff - #37 K.P. Hicks

It's now 37 days until kickoff of Catamount football at the Raymond James Stadium, home of the University of South Florida Bulls on August 30th in in Tampa, FL.

To help pass those long summer days until football season starts, and hopefully get the Catamount faithful more excited about the upcoming season, we'll continue the 100 day football countdown each day until kickoff day.

#37 K.P. Hicks


Class: RS Junior
Hometown: Charlotte, N.C.
High School: Home School
Height / Weight: 6-2 / 210
Position: LB




2013 (Redshirt Sophomore): Saw action in 10 games on the year, all as a substitution on defense and on special teams ... Credited with nine seasonal tackles including five solo stops ... Tallied a career-best three tackles in the home win against Mars Hill Named to the 2013 Fall Academic All-SoCon team ... Named to the 2013-14 Southern Conference Honor Roll ... Was a student representative on WCU's Student-Athlete Advisory Committee. 2012 (Redshirt Freshman): Played in all 11 games on the season as a reserve in the defensive secondary and on special teams ... Credited with five tackles on the year including three solo stops ... Named to the 2012 Southern Conference Fall Academic All-Conference team ... Paced the defense with 11 credited tackles in WCU's annual Spring Game.

2011 (Freshman): Redshirted ... Selected as WCU's defensive scout team player of the week following the Wofford game ... Named to WCU's Dean's List ... Held out of the 2012 spring drills due to injury.

Prior to Western Carolina: Played defensive end and outside linebacker for the Charlotte AFC Rangers, a team that is a part of the Carolinas Christian Athletic Association (CCAA) ... Earned first team all-conference accolades at outside linebacker and punter his senior season, as well as second team All-CCAA as a kicker helping guide his team to the conference and state title is his final year as a prep ... Picked up all-conference plaudits at defensive end his junior year ... As a sophomore, was awarded second team all-conference at outside linebacker.

Courtesy WCU Athletic Media Relations

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Southern Conference Preseason Polls Released

The 2014 Southern Conference Preseason Poll was released this morning at the SoCon Football Media Day.  Below is the outcome of the voting of both the coaches poll and media poll.   

The Cats finished both polls in fifth place, the highest ranking in pre season since 2005.  


Coaches Poll
1. Chattanooga  (6)

2. (t) Furman   (1)
2. (t) Samford  (1)
4. Wofford
5. Western Carolina
6. The Citadel
7. Mercer
8. VMI


Media Poll

1. Chattanooga  (29)
2. Furman  (1)
3. Samford
4. Wofford
5. Western Carolina
6. The Citadel
7. Mercer
8. VMI



Offensive Player of the Year:   Jacob Huesman, Jr., QB, Chattanooga
Defensive Players of the Year:  Davis Tull, Sr., DL, Chattanooga

First Team Offense
QB         Jacob Huesman, Jr., QB, Chattanooga
RB         Hank McCloud, Sr., Furman
RB         Keon Williams, Sr., Chattanooga
OL         Charles Emert, Sr., Furman
OL         Gunnar Bromelow, Jr., Samford
OL         Synjen Herren, Jr., Chattanooga
OL         Josh Wineberg, Jr., Western Carolina
OL         T.J. Chamberlin, Jr., Wofford
TE          Faysal Shafaat, Sr., Chattanooga
WR        Andrej Suttles, So., Furman
WR        Karnorris Benson, Jr., Western Carolina

First Team Defense
DL         Justin Oxendine, Sr., The Citadel
DL         Gary Wilkins, Sr., Furman
DL         Davis Tull, Sr., Chattanooga
DL         Tarek Odom, Sr., Wofford
LB          Carl Robinson, Sr., The Citadel
LB          Marcus McMorris, Sr., Furman
LB          Carl Rider, Jr., Furman
DB         Reggie Thomas, Jr., Furman
DB         James Bradberry, Jr., Samford
DB         Jaquiski Tartt, Sr., Samford
DB         Sertonuse Harris, Jr., Western Carolina

First Team Specialists
PK         Warren Handrahan, So., Samford
P           Greg Peranich, Sr., Samford
RS         Shaun Warren, Sr., Western Carolina

Second Team Offense
QB         Reese Hannon, Jr., Furman
RB         Darius Ramsey, Jr., Western Carolina
RB         Will Gay, Jr., Wofford
OL         Joe Turner, Jr., Furman
OL         C.H. Scruggs, Jr., Samford
OL         Corey Levin, So., Chattanooga
OL         Andrew Marcotte, Sr., VMI
OL         Anton Wahrby, So., Wofford
TE          Tony Philpot, Jr., Samford
WR        Karel Hamilton, So., Samford
WR        Terryon Robinson, So., Western Carolina

Second Team Defense
DL         Ira McCune, Sr., Furman
DL         Jerry Mathis, Sr., Samford
DL         Josh Freeman, Jr., Chattanooga
DL         Derrick Lott, Sr., Chattanooga
LB          Bobby Wilson, Jr., Samford
LB          Christon Gill, Sr., Western Carolina
LB          Kevin Thomas, Sr., Wofford
DB         Trey Robinson, So., Furman
DB         Ace Clark, Sr., Western Carolina
DB         Chris Armfield, So., Wofford
DB         Bernard Williams, Sr., Wofford

Second Team Specialists
PK         Richard Sigmon, Sr., Western Carolina
P           Nick Pollard, Sr., Chattanooga
RS         Will Gay, Jr., Wofford

A total of 8 Catamounts selected on the All-Conference teams.  Congratulations to all those Catamounts selected.   

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Looking at Game 10, Samford

Who:  Samford Bulldogs

When:  November 6, 2014 at 2:00 pm (CST)

Where:  Seibert Stadium, Birmingham, AL

Series history:   The Cats are 1-9 against the Bulldogs since winning the first outing back in 1969. Samford owns an eight game winning streak against Western and the Cats are 1-4 in games played in Seibert Stadium.

Their coach:  Pat Sullivan  - Heisman Trophy winner Pat Sullivan enters his seventh season as head coach of the Samford Bulldogs. Coming off their most successful season since joining the SoCon, Sullivan led his Bulldogs to a share of the 2013 SoCon Football Championship.

Last year’s record:   8-5 overall,  6-2 Southern.   The Bulldogs shared the SoCon Championship with Chattanooga and Furman, both of which ended the season with identical 6-2 conference records.

How they got there:   Samford opened the 2013 season on the road at Georgia State where they picked up their first FBS win over hapless Georgia State,  31-21.  The next week was not so kind to the Bulldogs as they dropped a game to Arkansas , 21-31 in Little Rock, AR.  Samford remained on the road the following week, traveling to Tallahassee, FL, where they picked up win #2 with a seven point win over Florida A&M.  Week number four brought the Bulldogs back to Birmingham to meet Southeastern Louisiana, however the Dogs dropped the contest by 3 points in a loss to the Lions.  The following week, the Cats traveled to Birmingham and suffered the second largest defeat of the season, a 62-23 loss.  Georgia Southern was next to travel to Birmingham, and suffered the same outcome as the Cats in a 44-24 loss at the hands of the Bulldogs. Samford traveled to Boone the following week, and  beat the Apps 34-10, then traveled the following week to Spartanburg and knocked off the Terriers 34-27. Remaining on the road the next two games the Bulldogs drop to conference games, first at the Citadel (26-28), then at Furman (17-35). The Bulldogs returned home for their last two conference games, beating both Chattanooga and Elon.  The Bulldogs closed out the season at Jacksonville State, getting blown out, 14-55.

Last season's game vs. Chattanooga:  September 28, 2013 - The Catamounts overcame an early 14-0 deficit with 10 straight points including quarterback Troy Mitchell's first rushing score of the season and a 27-yard field goal by Richard Sigmon. But the Bulldogs pulled away from there as on the ensuing kickoff after Sigmon's boot, dangerous all-purpose back Fabian Truss returned a kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown and Summerlin completed a 52-yard touchdown pass to Chris Cephus late in the second quarter. The Bulldogs led at halftime, 28-10. Samford added to its advantage in the second half as Summerlin threw two more touchdown passes, including a 68-yard strike to Gavin Sinclair.

Offensive Formation:  Multiple

Defensive Formation:  4-3

Starters Returning/Loss:  11 - 11

Offensive starters - Returning/Lost:    5 - 6

Defensive starters - Returning/Lost:   6 - 5

Specialist Returning/Lost:   3 - 0

2013 Statistics:
Scoring:  30.1 points per game
Rushing Offense:  122.8 yards per game
TDs rushing:  16 on the season
Passing Offense:  292.8 yards per game
TDs passing:  29 on the season
Total Offense:  415.6 yards per game
Fumbles-Lost:  19 - 11 lost
Penalties-Yards:  72 -  for  636 yards (48.9 ypg average)
On-side kicks:  0 - 2
3rd Down Conversions:  75 of 186  (40.3%)
4th Down Conversions:  6 of 10 (60%)
Field Goals - Attempts:  19 of 24
Red-Zone Scores:  46 of 56  (82%)
Red-Zone Touchdowns:  29 of 56   (51.7%)

Losses/Weaknesses: -  The Bulldogs must replace 6 starters, most notably the SoCon player of the year in quarterback Andy Summerlin as well as All American running back Fabian Truss.  At wide receiver Samford will be without the services of two seniors.

Key Losses - All American Fabian Truss (RB), the 2013 SoCon Offensive Player of the Year - QB Andy Summerlin, Wide Receivers Kelsey Pope & Chris Cephus

Strengths:  Arizona State transfer Michael Eubank and junior Carson Barnett will compete for the starting QB position.  Eubank spent two season as a backup QB for Arizona State, while Barnett served as back up to Summerlin.  At running back Jereiha Gates and Stanley Robinson are leading candidates to replace Truss

Returning Leaders: All American Safety Jaquiski Tartt, Kyle Champion - OL, CH Scruggs - OL, Jordan Boatright - OL, Gunnar Bromelow - OL, Karel Hamilton - WR, Michael Pierce - DL, Jerry Mathis - DL, Cavin Ruff - DL, Justin Cooper - LB, Clavin Ruff - LB, James Bradberry - CB


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38 Days 'till Kickoff - #38 William Ramsey

It's now 38 days until kickoff of Catamount football at the Raymond James Stadium, home of the University of South Florida Bulls on August 30th in in Tampa, FL.

To help pass those long summer days until football season starts, and hopefully get the Catamount faithful more excited about the upcoming season, we'll continue the 100 day football countdown each day until kickoff day.

#38 William Ramsey




Class: RS Freshman
Hometown: Lexington, N.C.
High School: Central Davidson HS
Height / Weight: 6-0 / 200
Position: WR

2013 (Freshman): Redshirted.

Personal: Is the son of Mike and Debi Ramsey.

Courtesy WCU Athletic Media Relations

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Announcing the SoCon Digital Network

With the purchase of more than $2 million worth of video and audio equipment for its member institutions, the Southern Conference will launch the SoCon Digital Network, a free streaming service that will be available for live broadcasts and on demand, in late August, 2014.

The SoCon Digital Network will will broadcast in high definition (HD), and will be accessible through the member schools’ websites and the Southern Conference’s official site.

"The network will feature live broadcasts of games not selected for carriage on national or regional outlets, as well as highlight packages, coaches’ shows, student-athlete features and more". In other words, don't expect to see games selected for ESPN3 or the American Sports Network (ASN) this fall to also be shown on the SoCon Digital Network. However, in my opinion, this seem to be the only negative in today's announcement, as I'm sure the SoCon has to give up broadcast rights to games for these other outlets.

Western Carolina fans will be able to watch four events at once, picture-in-picture, and the broadcasts will feature DVR rewind, pause and fast-forward controls. The network will have the ability for replays during games. Catamount fans will be able to view broadcast from a variety of mobile devices, including smartphones, iPad and Android tablets, and laptops and PCs.

“The creation of the SoCon Digital Network is a milestone for this conference,” SoCon Commissioner Iamarino said during today's announcement. “This has long been one of our primary goals to enhance the value our institutions and their student-athletes receive from being affiliated with the Southern Conference.”


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Hopper added to Catamount Football Staff

Western Carolina head football coach Mark Speir announced today the addition of James Hopper as an assistant on the defensive coaching staff.  He joined the coaching staff  from his alma mater, Virginia Tech, where he most recently was a defensive graduate assistant.

Hoppers duties at Virginia Tech included putting together scouting reports and running the scout team during the regular season.  On the Western staff, he will
work closely with defensive backs coach, LaMar Morgan, and will coach the Catamount cornerbacks.

Hopper played two seasons for the Hokies in 2010 and 2011 before an injury cut his playing career short.  He remained a part of the Hokie football, assisting as a student assistant in 2012, and became a graduate assistant for the 2013 season with defensive coordinator Bud Ford's staff.

Hopper played in 26 games for Virginia Tech, and contributed both on defense and special teams, helping the Hokies to back-to-back Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) Championship game appearances.


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2014 SoCon Football Media Day

Pic courtesy the Southern Conference   
The Southern Conference holds their annual Football Media Day on Wednesday (July 23) at the Spartanburg Marriott.

All nine head coaches and select student-athletes from each school will be on hand to meet the media and preview the upcoming season.

The event will be streamed live through the Southern Conference web site and can be viewed here.

All nine head coaches and student-athletes representing each SoCon program will appear on the live stream.

SoCon Live Stream Schedule: 
1:00 p.m. – Live Stream Begins
1:15 p.m. – VMI
1:30 p.m. – Samford
1:45 p.m. – Chattanooga
2:00 p.m. – Mercer
2:15 p.m. – The Citadel
2:30 p.m. – ETSU
3:45 p.m. – Western Carolina
3:00 p.m. – Furman
3:15 p.m. – Wofford

Southern Conference Media Day Attendees 
The Citadel – Head Coach Mike Houston, QB Aaron Miller, LB Carl Robinson
ETSU – Head Coach Carl Torbush
Furman – Head Coach Bruce Fowler, RB Hank McCloud, DE Gary Wilkins
Mercer – Head Coach Bobby Lamb, LB, Tosin Aguebor, QB John Russ
Samford – Assistant head coach Bill D'Ottavio, RB, Jeremiaha Gates, DB Jaquiski Tartt
Chattanooga – Head Coach Russ Huesman, DE Davis Tull, RB Keon Williams
VMI – Head Coach Sparky Woods, WR Sam Patterson, LB Logan Staib
Western Carolina – Head Coach Mark Speir, RB Darius Ramsey, DB Ace Clark
Wofford – Head Coach Mike Ayers, RB Will Gay, LB Travis Thomas

Courtesy SoConSports.com

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39 Days 'till Kickoff - #39 Shane Samuels

It's now 39 days until kickoff of Catamount football at the Raymond James Stadium, home of the University of South Florida Bulls on August 30th in in Tampa, FL.

To help pass those long summer days until football season starts, and hopefully get the Catamount faithful more excited about the upcoming season, we'll continue the 100 day football countdown each day until kickoff day.

#39 Shane Samuels




Class: RS Freshman
Hometown: Duncan, S.C.
High School: Byrnes HS
Height / Weight: 5-7 / 160
Position: DB

2013 (Freshman): Redshirted.

Prior to Western Carolina: Named to the Region II-4A All-Region team ... A ball-hawking defensive back, finished with 63 tackles, a tackle for loss, a forced fumble, four fumble recoveries, eight pass breakups and three interceptions as a senior ... Was a three-time Max Preps Defensive Player of the Game in 2012 ... As a junior, had 36 tackles including one for loss, 10 pass breakups and seven interceptions, returning two for touchdowns against rival Riverside ... Named to the Spartanburg Herald-Journal All-Area football team as well as an All-Region selection. Courtesy 


WCU Athletic Media Relations

Monday, July 21, 2014

P & P Sports Network’s First Preseason Football Power Poll

Palmetto & Pine Sports Network released the first ever combined SoCon/Big South Football Power Poll. 

This weekly poll is a ranking of all the Atlantic Sun, Big South, and Southern Conference members who field FCS football teams. We have also included Campbell, Jacksonville, and Stetson who all play football in the Pioneer League. Here is the Preseason P&P Sports Football Power Poll as voted on by our members. Note: first place votes are in parenthesis.


view the poll results here



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40 Days 'till Kickoff - #40 Tra Hardy

It's now 40 days until kickoff of Catamount football at the Raymond James Stadium, home of the University of South Florida Bulls on August 30th in in Tampa, FL.

To help pass those long summer days until football season starts, and hopefully get the Catamount faithful more excited about the upcoming season, we'll continue the 100 day football countdown each day until kickoff day.

#40 Tra Hardy




Class: Freshman
Hometown: Vidalia, Ga.
High School: Vidalia HS
Height / Weight: 5-11 / 175
Position: Ath.

Prior to Western Carolina: A solid, all-round performer who is a three-sport standout ... Was named to the AJC AA All-State team and the 2-AA Offensive Player of the Year ... Named to the Georgia Coaches Association All-State team as a defensive back and Earned Enmark All-Star team honors as a running back ... Accounted for 30 total touchdowns during his senior season ... Rushed for 1,672 yards and 24 touchdowns with 10 catches for 218 receiving yards and two scores ... Defensively, finished with 58 tackles and two sacks ... Recorded five interceptions returning two for touchdowns including a 90 yard, pick-six against Atkinson County ... Started three years at cornerback ... Was also key in the Indians' special teams on kick returns, returning a kickoff and a punt for touchdowns in earning first team All-Middle Georgia honors ... Scored six touchdowns in a single game against Metter on Sept. 27, 2013, compiling 183 rushing yards on 17 carries with a 55-yard TD reception ... Also played basketball and baseball as a prep, starting for both squads ... High school coach was Lee Chomskis.

Personal: Full name is Travares Hardy, but prefers to go by Tra (pronounced Tray) ... Is the son of Gregg Hardy and Constance Durden. Courtesy 

WCU Athletic Media Relations

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Looking at Game 9, Chattanooga

Who: University of Tennessee at Chattanooga Mocs

When:  November 1, 2014 at 2:00 pm

Where: Bob Waters Field at E.J. Whitmire Stadium, Cullowhee, NC

Series history:  The Cats own a 16-24-0 record against the Mocs, having first played in football in 1973.  UTC currently owns a 5 game win streak against the Cats. and hold a 10-9 record in games played in Cullowhee.

Their coach:  Russ Huesman  - The 2013 SoCon Football Coach of the Year is entering his sixth season as head coach. Since taking over in 2009, Chattanooga is 31-25 under Huesman.

Last year’s record:  8-4 overall, 6-2 Southern Conference - The Mocs received a share of the 2013 Football Championship with a 6-2 conference record.  The Mocs shared the title with Furman and Samford. 

How they got there:  The Mocs started the season ranked 24 nationally and opened play with high hopes in Chattanooga against UT Martin. However, at the end of the day UTM departed Finley Stadium with smiles and a 31-21 victory over Chattanooga.  UTC traveled the next week to Atlanta, GA to meet Georgia State in the Georgia Dome and returned home with their first road win of the season, and a beatdown of Sun Belt Conference foe Georgia State, 42-14.  Week three had the Mocs returning to Finley where they picked up a home win over Austin Peay, 42-10.  Playing the second GSU in two weeks, the Mocs traveled to Statesboro, GA and lost to the number 15 ranked Eagles by 2 points, 21-23.  WCU was next to visit Finley, and the Mocs came away with their third victory of the young season, 42-21 over the Catamounts. Following WCU in Chattanooga was the other purple team Furman, who departed with the same outcome, a 31-9 loss.  In week seven, UTC traveled to Elon, NC where they picked up win number 5, over the Phoenix, 20-9.  The Citadel made the trip to Chattanooga next, dropping a 4 point loss to the Mocs,28-24.  The Mocs then traveled to Boone, NC where they snapped a 14 game losing streak in Boone to the Mountaineers, 35-28. Next up, #15 ranked Wofford invaded Finley Stadium, but departed with a 10-20 loss at the hands of the Mocs. The now #17 ranked Mocs traveled to Birmingham, AL to meet Samford for the final conference game of the season, but lost, in overtime to a determined Bulldog team, 14-7. In the final game of the season, the Mocs played at Alabama, giving up 49 points, scoring none. The 6-2 Mocs did not receive the conference auto bid, nor an at large invitation to the FCS playoff.

Last season's game vs. Chattanooga:   October, 5th 2013 -  Chattanooga quarterback Jacob Huesman tossed four touchdown passes and rushed for a fifth as the Mocs handed Western Carolina a 42-21 loss at Finley Stadium / Davenport Field. Huesman threw for 223 of UTC's 432 total yards of offense, adding 49 yards on the ground in the victory for the Mocs. Tailback Keon Williams rushed for 127 and a score in the winning effort.  Chattanooga converted three WCU first half interceptions into 14 points, while limiting the Cats to just 63 total yards in the opening half to carry a 21-0 point lead into the locker room.

Offensive Formation:   multiple

Defensive Formation:   multiple

Lettermen Returning:  39 / 19

Starters Returning/Loss:   15 - 9

Offensive starters - Returning/Lost:   8 - 3

Defensive starters - Returning/Lost:  5 - 6

Specialist Returning/Lost:   3 - 1

Statistics:
Scoring:   26.3 points per game
Rushing Offense:  212.4 yards per game
TDs rushing:   24
Passing Offense:  149.0 yards per game
TDs passing:   14
Total Offense:  361.4 yards per game
Fumbles-Lost:   10 - 6
Penalties-Yards:   47 - 394
On-side kicks:  0 - 0
3rd Down Conversions:  71 of 161  (44%)
4th Down Conversions:   12 of 21  (57%)
Field Goals - Attempts:   5 of 10  (50%)
Red-Zone Scores:  32 0f 39  (82)
Red-Zone Touchdowns:  28 of 39  (72%)

Losses/Weaknesses: - The Moc defense took the biggest hit in losses, losing 6 starters, two linebackers, two safeties, and two cornerbacks.  The defense also lost 3 additional lettermen - a defensive tackle, a linebacker and a cornerback.

Key Losses - Terrell Robinson - WR, Patrick Sutton - C, Kevin Revis - OG, Wess Dolhard - LB, Gunner Miller - LB, D.J. Key - S, Zach McCarter - S, Chaz Moore - CB, Kadeem Wise - S

Strengths: - The offensive side of the ball returns 8 starters, and defensive end Davis Tull, tight end Faysal Shafaat and defensive tackle Derrick Lott are preseason All-Americans, helping the Mocs to a No. 10 national ranking in the Lindy’s preseason top-25, No. 12 in Athlon and No. 14 in The Sporting News poll.

Returning Leaders: Jacob Huesman - QB, Keon Williams - RB, Nick Pollard - P, Davis Tull - DE, Faysal Shafaat - TE, Derrick Lott - DE


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41 Days 'till Kickoff - LaMar Morgan

It's now 41 days until kickoff of Catamount football at the Raymond James Stadium, home of the University of South Florida Bulls on August 30th in in Tampa, FL.

To help pass those long summer days until football season starts, and hopefully get the Catamount faithful more excited about the upcoming season, we'll continue the 100 day football countdown each day until kickoff day.

There is currently no player assigned to #41, so today, we'll highlight an assistant coach.

LaMar Morgan




Position: Assistant Coach / Defensive Backs
Alma Mater: UL-Lafayette
Graduated: 2007

LaMar Morgan joined the Catamount football coaching staff in mid-March, 2014 after spending two years assistant with the Vanderbilt Commodores' SAM linebackers and nickel backs.

In two seasons on staff in Nashville, Morgan helped Vanderbilt's defense rank inside the top 23 nationally in total defense in back-to-back, 9-4 seasons that ended in bowl game appearances. Last fall, Vanderbilt ranked 14th nationally at the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) level in total takeaways including 13th nationally in interceptions. 

Morgan was a four-year letter winner at Louisiana-Lafayette from 2003, 2005-07, starting for four years at safety, playing in 40 career games. He finished with 111 career tackles including 61 solo stops and four tackles for loss with a sack, posting 55 tackles as a senior and a single-game career-high 14 in 2006 against Texas A&M as a junior. He intercepted four passes from his safety position and tallied nine pass break-ups as a player.

A two-time team captain for the Ragin' Cajuns, Morgan was also a semifinalist for the Draddy Trophy - now the Campbell Trophy or referenced as the "Academic Heisman" - as a senior. During his playing career,

Morgan was also a two-time Sun Belt Commissioner's List selection and appeared on the Sun Belt Conference Honor Roll five times.

After receiving some interest from NFL teams, Morgan ventured into professional football with the Jacksonville Sharks of the Arena Football League (AFL). In 2010, he tallied 18 tackles including seven solo stops with a pair of pass break-ups.

Originally from Copperas Cove, Texas, Morgan got his coaching start at Joshua High in Texas, working with the varsity secondary while also assisting with the middle school's team.

A 2007 graduate of UL-Lafayette with a bachelor's in business administration, Morgan has a pair of post-graduate degrees from Texas A&M-Commerce and is working towards a third Master's degree from Vanderbilt.


Courtesy WCU Athletic Media Relations

Saturday, July 19, 2014

42 Days 'till Kickoff - #42 Alphaeus Newman Jr.

It's now 42 days until kickoff of Catamount football at the Raymond James Stadium, home of the University of South Florida Bulls on August 30th in in Tampa, FL.

To help pass those long summer days until football season starts, and hopefully get the Catamount faithful more excited about the upcoming season, we'll continue the 100 day football countdown each day until kickoff day.

Today, we'll highlight defensive backs.

 #42 Alphaeus Newman Jr.




Class: Freshman
Hometown: Ellenwood, Ga.
High School: Cedar Grove HS
Height / Weight: 6-1 / 190
Position: DB

 Prior to Western Carolina: Was named All-State and All-Region in his final year ... Finished with 93 career tackles including 53 hits as a senior ... Tallied five career interceptions, four in his senior campaign ... On offense, caught 13 passes for 152 yards and a touchdown ... Also ran track as a prep ... High school coach was Jermaine Smith.

Personal: Full name is Alphaeus Newman, Jr., but goes by "A.J." .... Is the son of Alphaeus Sr., and Tamiska Newman ... Has an elder sibling, Jazmin ... Was a high school teammate of current Catamount, Tyson Dickson.


Courtesy WCU Athletic Media Relations

Friday, July 18, 2014

43 Days 'till Kickoff - #43 Kendall White

It's now 43 days until kickoff of Catamount football at the Raymond James Stadium, home of the University of South Florida Bulls on August 30th in in Tampa, FL.

To help pass those long summer days until football season starts, and hopefully get the Catamount faithful more excited about the upcoming season, we'll continue the 100 day football countdown each day until kickoff day.

Today, we'll highlight line backers.

#43 Kendall White




Class: Freshman
Hometown: Jacksonville, N.C.
High School: White Oak HS
Height / Weight: 5-11 / 210
Position: LB

Prior to Western Carolina: Played as a running back and safety at White Oak HS ... Recorded 27 total tackles including 21 solo stops in the fall of 2013 ... Credited with five pass breakups and one interception ... Rushed for 471 yards with 41 yards receiving during his final season ... Finished with seven total touchdowns as a senior including five rushing scores ... Also plays basketball as a prep ... High school football coach was Chad Ashley.

Personal: Is the son of Damon White.


Courtesy WCU Athletic Media Relations