‘Magnificent Six’ to continue college careers, leave behind legacy at Natchez

Published 11:19 am Wednesday, February 1, 2023

NATCHEZ — Damarcco Blanton, Koren Harris, Kameron Carter, Mike Williams Jr., Landen Sewell and Traylon Minor sat on a stage at Robert Lewis Middle School and signed one by one their letters of intent to play college football Wednesday morning. The six seniors were referred to as the “magnificent six,” by head coach Steve Davis. 

Athletic Director Alphaka Moore said their leadership was incredible over the years. She would go to the “magnificent six” to get their input on how to handle things with the athletic department.

Davis took over the football program in the spring of 2022 after coaching at Franklin County. He said the six seniors welcomed him and made his job easier in how they lead the program. 

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“I’m blessed because of these guys who have stayed here,” Davis said. “I will hate to lose them. I wish I could redshirt them. They made our job easier as coaches. They deserve the credit. Their assistant coaches deserve credit too. With college coaches, I never had to speak about football and Friday nights. Their film already spoke for them. I could speak about their character and work ethic. I could speak about what each school will get. Every conversation, I was honored to talk about them.” 

Davis proceeded to give a brief summary of each player’s role and character. Minor was nicknamed the “Iron Horse,” for his utility and never quit attitude. Sewell was a player Davis could count on and always had a smile to lift spirits. 

Williams acted as a coach and would better his teammates. “He wanted to win,” Davis said. Carter played football this fall for the first time since he was 12 and Davis said he was something special. 

Harris was always there and in the backfield for Natchez disrupting plays. He was an anchor for the defense. Davis said he and Blanton “went through so much but I love you, I will still pick at you and give you a hard time but I love you.” 

“I would battle for each of those guys. They represented their families, this city, this school and themselves in the right way,” Davis said. “Thursday nights won’t be their last stop. They will go on to play on Saturday and Mike will already be there. I can’t wait to see (Mike) up at Jackson State.”

Davis turned his attention to the kids on the football team who will return next season. 

“It will be hard to replace these six. They laid the groundwork so don’t let it go to waste,” Davis said. “They laid the foundation here. Magnificent Six laid it down, don’t let it go to waste.”  

Moore said the six seniors were a special group from the moment she first saw them play. They didn’t quit and made things happen. 

“They pushed through and led on the sidelines and the school,” Moore said.

Principal Eric Jackson said the group of seniors displayed excellence. 

“They have done this since they joined us,” Jackson said. “On behalf of the school district, congratulations. We wish each of you good luck as you move on.” 

Next stop, college

Damarrco Blanton will continue his football career at Southwest Mississippi Community College. Blanton had 566 receiving yards in his final season with the Bulldogs and scored eight touchdowns. His longest catch went for 74 yards. 

In Blanton’s senior year, he had 215 yards combined from kick returns, punt returns and interception returns and returned one punt for a touchdown. Southwest Mississippi Community College is located in Summit. 

“I want to give thanks to God, without him nothing is possible,” Blanton said. “I want to say thank you to my family and coaching staff for guiding me and pushing me. I wouldn’t be who I am today without them.” 

His teammate Harris will also attend Southwest Mississippi Community College. The Harris family wore white shirts which said “Reach the Summit” on them as he signed his letter. He had 61 tackles in his final year with the Bulldogs and shone as a safety and defensive back. 

“I chose Southwest because I thought the coaches and conditioning were good,” Harris said. “The way the community is there is god and it is peaceful. It is also closer to home. I want to thank God, my coaches and the people who believed in me.” 

Carter makes the third Bulldog to sign with Southwest Wednesday morning. He will attend Southwest on a basketball and football scholarship. Carter was a three sport athlete in high school playing football, basketball and baseball although basketball was his main sport. 

“I liked the coaches and I liked the campus. It felt like home when I visited,” Carter said. “They gave me an opportunity to play both sports. It is where I needed to be.” 

Williams is headed to the capitol to play football at Jackson State. Deion Sanders was the coach at Jackson State but left before Williams could play for him, he decided to stick with the Tigers.

Williams racked up 490 yards in receiving his final year and finished his career with 1,745 yards. He also scored six receiving touchdowns his senior year. 

“The coaching staff is awesome there,” Williams said. “Thank you to my coaches here. They started me as a ninth grader. Thank you for making us work hard.” 

Sewell was the veteran on the offensive line this season as a center. He also forced a fumble and made a recovery for the Bulldogs. His next step is to play football at Pearl River Community College in Poplarville. 

“They took a chance on me. I didn’t know if I would go on to play or not,” Sewell said. “I was always told I was undersized for my position. It felt like home when I visited campus at Pearl River. Thanks to my family. They are why I started playing football. Thank you to the coaching staff too. They threw me in the fire when I started and it paid off.” 

Minor, who played football and baseball for the Bulldogs, will go on to Wesson to play football at Co-Lin Community College. He had 800 rushing yards and scored 10 touchdowns in his final season with Natchez. 

“I don’t have much to say. Thank you to my family and the coaching staff,” he said.