Natchez ties will be on display when Alcorn State, Southern Miss meet

Published 9:08 am Wednesday, August 30, 2023

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HATTIESBURG — Natchez will have several players taking the field for Southern Miss when the Golden Eagles play Alcorn State to open the season this weekend. Jakarius Caston, Kamron and Kyron Barnes will take the field for Southern Miss. 

They are each graduates of Adams County Christian School. 

By comparison, Alcorn State will have several Natchez players taking the field. Kee Wayne Jones, a graduate of Natchez Early College, will play. Jacorian Sewell, Adams County Christian School alumn, Ernest Woods II, Natchez High School alumn, and Paul Hargrave, a Natchez High School alumn, will suit up for the Braves. 

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Southern Miss held a press conference Tuesday ahead of the instate game. With fall camp behind them as well as the start of the fall semester classes, the Golden Eagles now change their focus on its opening opponent, Alcorn State. 

“(We) started introducing Alcorn,” said Hall. “They’re obviously a proud program and over the last several years they’ve won a lot of conference championships. It’s going to be a tremendous challenge. We expect The Rock to be packed and it should be a fun first game. We’ve got to be ready for that and all that entails and we’ve transitioned over to kind of doing that.”

Each practice over the last few weeks  the team has spent 25 minutes planning for Alcorn State. Game week is finally here. Hall said Tuesday he is excited to watch his corners play this week and the quarterbacks have been sharp. 

“Defensively, corners have been a group that have been questioned and maligned all offseason but they have got a lot of talent and it is going to be interesting to watch them roll it out there against somebody else and play,” Hall said. 

He added he has some familiarity with the Braves coaching staff. Defensively, Alcorn will be hard hitting and rely on defense to win. 

“Alcorn is going to be fired up to play us. I know Coach McNair well, I know their defensive coordinator Cedric Thomas,” Hall said. “We go way back through the Mississippi JUCOs. I have a good friendship with him. A lot of trust is built through recruiting through the years. They are going to be fired up to play here and play us.”

Offensively, the Braves will look to run the football. Special teams will play a role in the game, Hall said. He feels kicking will make the difference with field position and scoring points. 

He expects the stadium to be a rocking atmosphere for the game. Alcorn State is likely to win the SWAC, Hall said. 

Alcorn will be led by quarterback Tyler Macon. The dual threat quarterback was recruited out of St. Louis and transferred from the University of Missouri. Macon presents problems to a defense as they will need to tackle well and prevent him from making plays with his feet. 

Hall said he expects the Braves receivers to get behind the defense and make plays. All offseason, Southern Miss has made it a point of emphasis to not let teams beat them by taking deep shots down field in the passing game. 

“Our defensive staff know Macon’s skill set. We have got friends in Missouri. We kind of know where he is from and what he did while he was there,” Hall said. “Obviously he was a big time recruit. When you sign in the SEC usually you have got something in you. We are prepared for what we think his skill set is based off his high school film and what we have heard.” 

Tickets are still available for that game as well as the final five home games this fall. Fans can contact purchase home season or single game tickets at, by calling 1-800-844-TICK (8425) or visit the Pat Ferlise Ticket Office on campus weekdays during normal business hours.