Aeneas Williams left his mark on Southern football before embarking on an NFL career that landed him in the Pro Football Hall of Fame in August.
When he returned to campus for the Jaguars’ 51-36 homecoming victory against Arkansas-Pine Bluff last Saturday, Williams left a mark on this year’s team.
During a pregame talk to the team Williams said something coach Dawson Odums has turned into the team’s motto.
“Aeneas said it great,” Odums said Tuesday at his weekly news conference. “He just talked about being the best at your role. We sort of carried that. Before this team started last year, we had, ‘You’ve got to go to work.’ It was predicated on the mailman, regardless of the weather, has got to go to work. That came from somebody that spoke to our team.
“Now this year we’ve got a theme that can carry us — ‘Be the best at your role,’ whether that’s on the field, off the field — just be the best, be the best scout team player that you can be. If everybody takes on that mindset, it’s amazing the things that you can accomplish.”
Pick your poison
Willie Quinn and Danny Johnson have both returned kickoffs 98 yards for atouchdown this season. With senior Jaleel Richardson having been cleared last week, the Jaguars have three standout kickoff returners, and they rotated them in various pairs last Saturday.
“It allows us to keep a fresh guy in there,” Odums said. “Danny’s playing defense and Willie’s playing a lot of snaps on offense. It helps to have a guy back there with some fresh legs.
“I think every team that watches us on film understands that whoever’s back there as a kickoff returner has the potential to go this distance, and I think that’s a blessing for this football team.”
More weekly awards
Johnson’s return earned him the College Football Performance Awards FCS Kickoff Returner of the Week award. He had been named SWAC co-Special Teams Player of the Week on Monday.
Wide receiver Reggie Travis, who had five catches for 156 yards and three touchdowns, was named SWAC Offensive Player of the Week by College Sports Madness a day after receiving a similar honor from the SWAC and the Louisiana Sports Writers Association.
Shorts out this week too
Quarterback Deonte Shorts will miss his fourth consecutive game because of injury when Southern visits Alabama A&M on Saturday. Shorts missed the game at Prairie View on Sept. 20 because of a sore elbow.
His return from that injury was short-circuited by a groin injury. The Jaguars have an open date next week before visiting Jackson State on Oct. 25.
“He should be coming back once we get out of the bye week,” Odums said. “He’s progressing along great. He was on the treadmill alongside me the other morning and I asked him how he was doing.
“He was running a lot faster than I was pedaling on the bike, but he seems to be coming along just fine and I just told him, ‘Ease your way back. We want you back 100 percent, and we’ll welcome you back once you’re healthy.’ ”
Jaguars goalkeeper honored
Southern player of the week awards weren’t limited to the football team.
Jaguars goalkeeper Sarah Forde was named SWAC Soccer Player of the Week after recording her third consecutive shutout.
Southern, 4-7-1 and 3-0-1 in the SWAC, hosts Nicholls State at 6 p.m. Thursday and begins SWAC play when it hosts Howard, a new SWAC member in soccer, at 1 p.m. Sunday.
The Jaguars volleyball team hosts UNO at 6 p.m. Thursday.
Discounted tickets offered
Southern is offering a “Fall Six Pack” discounted football ticket package. Anyone purchasing two tickets to each game during the Jaguars three-game home-stand in November will receive a 20 percent discount on their purchase.
Bus trip to Huntsville
Openings remain for the SU Quarterback Club bus trip to the game at Alabama A&M on Saturday.
The cost is $210 for a single hotel room and $285 for a double and includes a game ticket.
For information, visitsouthernuniversityqbclub.com or call Jonathan Dearbone
at (225) 572-5878), Reginald Jarvis at (225) 939-5906 or Robert Brown (225) 287-8385.