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LSU fans react to NFL Draft first-round selections

NATCHEZ — Miss-Lou LSU fans and virtually every football fan in America huddled around their televisions Thursday night to watch the first round of the NFL Draft where five LSU players were drafted out of 32 players.

Tommy Davis, 51, who has been an LSU Tigers fan for 21 years, said he was exited about former LSU quarterback and Heisman trophy winner Joe Burrow being the No. 1 pick by the Cincinnati Bengals in Thursday night’s first-round draft.

“I’m very happy for Joe going No. 1,” Davis said. “I hope he can fare well in his home state. He is a young man and a class act.”

In comparison to drafts in the past where fans were able to congregate at the NFL Draft hosting site, this year was the first virtual draft due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Van Phillips, 64, said he watched the NFL Draft at home while wearing his purple and gold LSU polo shirt.

Phillips said he has been a fan of the LSU Tigers all of his life.

“Both my parents went to school at LSU, so it’s in my blood,” Phillips said. “I also go to every home game.”

Other than Burrow, the four LSU players drafted in the first round were K’Lavon Chaisson (No. 20 pick by Jacksonville Jaguars), Justin Jefferson (No. 22 pick by Minnesota Vikings), Patrick Queen (No. 28 pick by Baltimore Ravens) and Clyde Edwards-Helaire (No. 32 pick by Kansas City Chiefs).

Daniel Slayton, 38, said he enjoyed Thursday’s first round.

“I think it’s phenomenal to see a team have that many players off of one team in the first round,” Slayton said. “It’s icing on the cake and it shows how good that team really was and how many great athletes were on the field during that season.”

Besides five LSU players drafted in the first round, a former Jones College player Javon Kinlaw, a defensive tackle, was drafted as the No. 14 pick by the San Francisco 49ers.

Kinlaw, a defensive tackle, played for the Jones College Bobcats in the 2016 season before moving onto play for the University of South Carolina Gamecocks.

In the 2019 season with the Gamecocks, South Carolina year with South Carolina, Kinlaw accumulated 35 tackles, six sacks, two fumble recoveries and one blocked kick.

For the Bobcats in 2016, Kinlaw posted 26 tackles and 4.5 sacks.

Yohan Thompson played for Adams County Christian School as both the kicker and wide receiver and will be going to play at Jones College on scholarship in the fall.

“It’s awesome seeing a player that went to the school I’m going to, being drafted so early in the first round,” Thompson said. “It’s a morale boost seeing athletes that went to Jones College succeed and go professional because it shows I can do it, too.”

For the NFL Draft, the 32 NFL teams draft players in three rounds to play for their team in the next NFL season.

The second round began at 7 p.m. Friday and the final round is at 11 a.m. Saturday.

“The fun part was seeing how many players are going to be chosen in the next rounds of the NFL Draft,” Slayton said. “That just emphasized how good the talent was on the field and how good of a coaching staff was there that put the players in the right positions to make everything happen.”