Some notes for you. Sorry this is so late. It was basically done Friday morning, but then I got called in to help on a Cam Newton story (He’s transferring to Georgia State!) (just kidding) and that kind of put other stuff on the backburner.
1. Kalan Jenkins will be ready for the game. Jenkins played at Navarro Community College in Corsicana, Texas, and was teammates with several players on the Lamar team. Lamar coach Ray Woodard, in fact, left Navarro for Lamar just as Jenkins was arriving.
“We haven’t spoken yet about it, but I’m sure we’ll contact each other and exchange some words before the game,” Jenkins said of his ex-teammates.
I didn’t realize that Jenkins actually wasn’t even recruited to play junior college. He was a walk-on at Navarro. He came as a defensive end, saw that there was a logjam there and switched to tight end. He came to Georgia State as a tight end and then switched back to defensive line after spring ball. (Bill Curry has said on more than one occasion that a lot or many of his players were guys that no one wanted. I’m not sure I’ve always bought it, but the more I learn about his players, the more I realize it’s the case.)
“When they first told me (to switch positions), I didn’t think it’d be that hard a transition back to playing defensive end, but re-learning and reading the blocks, getting off the ball, which I’m still having a little bit of trouble with, just learning those simple things is taking me a little bit longer,” Jenkins said.
I suspect that next year, Jenkins, a junior, will be much more of a force than this season.
2. I asked Curry about scout-team guys who have impressed him. He said Rendell Wilder, “is going to be a sensational player.” Deron Rhodes, a defensive tackle, was another. A few others – wide receiver C.J. Green, defensive back Jaquies Jackson and guard Jon Marshall Sauls.
Said Curry, “And there are a lot that I’m leaving out.”
3. Curry said he brought up to the team the possibility of a winning season on Thursday. He said he told the team he would never judge the season or players by wins and losses because so much was unknown going into the season.
“But everybody else will,” Curry said. “Do you want to be remembered as a winning team?”
I’m going to presume the answer is yes.
4. For those of you who plan to get there early (or want a reason to), a note from the athletic department:
Panther Fans! Come help cheer on the GSU football team as they enter the Georgia Dome for the final home game of the inaugural season on Nov. 6th vs. Lamar. Simply put, the “Panther Walk” entails the football team walking through a gauntlet of fans and cheerleaders to enter the Georgia Dome. It takes place between 10:45 – 10:55 AM outside of Gate E of the Georgia Dome. The Panther Walk has grown each week and is another great way to show your support for the Panthers! (Gate E is on the opposite side of the orange lot. To get there, I’d walk along the east side of the building – that’s the right side if you’re looking at the dome from the orange lot – and then just keep walking along the perimeter of the dome along the upper level. Gate E is down a set of stairs on the other side of the building, basically the 50-yard line extended out. Sorry the directions aren’t good. Directions are not a personal strength.)
Also from the department: Georgia State Athletics and GSU Auxiliary and Support Services are partnering for the Eighth Annual Toys for Tots Campaign, and Panther fans are invited to participate.
GSU football fans who bring a new, unwrapped to Saturday’s game versus Lamar at the Georgia Dome can purchase a game ticket for just $10.
Toy collection boxes will be set up in front of the main ticket at the Georgia Dome between Gates A and D. Individuals donating a toy will receive a voucher that can be redeemed at the main ticket window to purchase a game ticket for just $10. One discounted ticket per person.
5. One last thing. I wish I’d thought of this earlier, because this might have generated some discussion. It’s possible that Saturday’s Georgia-Idaho State game could offer something of an insight into what awaits Georgia State in Tuscaloosa.
Idaho State is a not very good FCS team. The Bengals are 1-7 and ranked No. 206 in the Sagarin ratings. Georgia State is No. 185. (Lamar, actually, is No. 204) I suppose once you get down to this level, it’s hard to distinguish. But, I think we can agree these are largely the low end of FCS teams. Idaho State is not a big team – most of the offensive linemen are in the 270-290 range. It lost badly to Utah State, a weak FBS team.
So if Idaho State can at least stay on the field with Georgia – which, granted, is not Alabama, but certainly within the Tide’s realm – maybe your Panthers have some hope.
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