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Tucker adjusts to college game

NATCHEZ — While the Copiah-Lincoln Community College football team had a banner season, former Natchez High School standout Cody Tucker waited in the wings for his opportunity.

The first-year defensive back took a redshirt this season and watched the Wolfpack put together a 9-3 season that included a Mississippi Association of Community and Junior Colleges state championship and a trip to the Mississippi Bowl in Biloxi.

“It was a pretty good year,” Tucker said. “I got redshirted, but I was still working with the team, and we made it to the state championship and lost a bowl game. It was a pretty decent year.”

Tucker did not see the field in a game this season but gained valuable experience during practice, he said.

“I got to go out and show the coaches what I can do and maybe that will be good for next year,” he said. “You don’t play, but you learn how fast the game goes and how tense it is going to be. And I got a chance to learn from the older guys.”

Tucker said he improved as a football player over the course of the season, and he hopes that he can contribute in his next two seasons.

“I plan on fitting in and being the first cornerback, the second free safety or getting in wherever I fit,” he said. “Whatever position they feel like playing me, I’ll be happy.”

Not only did Tucker spend the fall adjusting to the speed of college football, he also spent time adjusting to the speed of college life.

“It was better than high school,” he said. “I took three classes from 8 to 11 (a.m.), then I was out the rest of the day until practice. After practice I got my homework done, and then you have the rest of the day to yourself.”

The transition was made easier by the number of Miss-Lou athletes on the Co-Lin roster that were there to make Tucker feel somewhat at home, he said.

“It felt wonderful seeing my buddies from high school there,” he said.

One of Tucker’s proudest moments this football season came as a fan, however, when he watched his alma mater beat Oak Grove High School to end its season.

“I was proud,” he said. “The whole team was young, and I was glad to see they all came together and played as a team.”

Tucker has an offseason of hard work ahead of him before going after the starting cornerback spot next season, but he said he is ready for the challenge.

“I just have to do what I’m supposed to do and stay in shape,” he said.