Locals fare well during college season

Published 12:00 am Monday, November 29, 1999

The next football season began last Friday for Ferriday’s Jeremy Lawrence. Lawrence had an unassisted tackle for a 4-yard loss in LSU’s 35-10 win over Arkansas.

&uot;This is the start of my 2000 season,&uot; Lawrence said. &uot;I just want us to try and keep this going.&uot;

And while the game is not something Lawrence will have in his resume, the final score is all that counted for the LSU redshirt freshman.

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The excitement over the win comes from the fact that it was only the third victory of the season for the Tigers and it broke an eight-game losing streak.

&uot;I guess it was just something we all knew we could do,&uot; Lawrence said. &uot;I’m glad we finally showed the real LSU team to the nation and to the fans.&uot;

Despite the record, Lawrence said the Tigers did have something to play for.

&uot;We were playing for pride,&uot; he said. &uot;We couldn’t just lay down like we did last year.&uot;

Lawrence and his teammates will be playing for a new coach next year, but the Tiger rush linebacker would prefer playing for the same assistant coaches.

&uot;I have only been here two years and this is the only coaching staff I have known,&uot; Lawrence said. &uot;The coaches usually look a lot more at the young players, so I wish they didn’t have to go. I think in the last game we showed we have the best staff and one of the best teams.&uot;

Lawrence’s best game of the year was against Kentucky when he had two unassisted tackles, five assists and a tackle behind the line. His only sack came against Auburn when he tackled Ben Leard for a 16-yard loss.

Lawrence couldn’t catch Arkansas’ Clint Stoerner, but helped to hold him to minus-10 yards rushing.

&uot;I didn’t know he could run as fast as he can,&uot; he said. &uot;He runs pretty good.&uot;

Meanwhile, former Ferriday Trojan Kerwin Cook had to battle a back injury most of the year that saw him miss the final five games of the season.

Cook finished with only eight catches for 107 yards. Five of those catches for 98 yards came against Syracuse.

Cook caught 37 passes for 405 yards last year as a sophomore, including four receptions for 123 yards in the Green Wave’s win over Brigham Young in the Liberty Bowl.

But the back injury and the loss of quarterback Shaun King made for a less formidable season.

Cook wanted to play near the end of the year, but was advised against it by coaches and team doctors.

He certainly would have helped teammate JaJuan Dawson, who was averaging close to nine catches a game.

Cook is expected to have a complete recovery and should be back in the limelight next year.

Tulane teammate Burl Burns of Vidalia, La., was redshirted and should see action at running back or defensive back next year for the Green Wave.

Meanwhile, Centreville’s Justin Sawyer did not make a catch for Ole Miss this year, but the true freshman came in on several short yardage plays at tight end.

Look for Ole Miss to go Sawyer’s way more next year. That’s when Sawyer’s former teammate Rob Robertson will team back up with him after committing to the Rebels before the season.

I wouldn’t be surprised to see Robertson redshirted. Once this talented youngster puts on some more muscle, he will be a force to be reckoned with by Ole Miss opponents of the future.

Natchez’s Von Hutchins, a Cathedral graduate, was also redshirted. Look for Hutchins to give much-needed assistance at defensive back or receiver next year.

Joey Martin is sports editor of the Democrat. He can be reached at 446-5172 ext 232 or by e-mail at joey.martin@natchezdemocrat.com.