BOWL COVERAGE: @LATechFB Class of 2017 Has a Senior Moment

Dec. 19, 2017

By Teddy Allen teddy@latech.edu

FRISCO, Texas — The seniors say the same semi-sad thing.

“I feel like I just got here,” kicker Jonathan Barnes said, “and now it’s time to leave.”

“When we first got here, the seniors told us to take advantage of these years because they’re going to fly by,” safety Secdrick Cooper said. “And they really did.”

“We were freshmen and the seniors, they’re trying to reach us, they’re trying to show us around town,” said linebacker Russell Farris, “and then we’re here and … it all feels like yesterday.”

There’s a lot of ball in the rearview of this senior class. Three 9-win seasons, three bowl wins, and now the possibility of a fourth victory if the Bulldogs can beat five-point favorite SMU, 7-5, Wednesday night in the inaugural DXL Frisco Bowl in Toyota Stadium.

The 6-6 road has been bumpy, one long test. Wednesday night’s the final.

“What I’ve learned this year?” senior defensive end Deldrick Canty said. “Nobody’s going to give you anything. You’ve got to earn it all.”

“Keep fighting; it’s never over until it’s over,” Cooper said. “We were down with a 4-6 record, we kept fighting. Even after the UAB game (lost on a blocked field goal try as time expired), or after FAU came in here (and won 48-23 at The Joe), we just never gave up. You’ve got to keep fighting; you’ve got to keep fighting. And we never gave in.”

“Got to keep pounding, no matter what the situation is,” said Farris, who had a career-high 13 tackles and was named Conference USA’s Defensive Player of the Week in Tech’s final game of the regular season, a 20-6 victory over UTSA that made the ’Dogs bowl eligible. “When everyone looks at the scoreboard, we need to see 0-0 and give our best effort. No matter what the outcome is, we know to keep fighting to the end.”

 

 

“This year’s taught me a lot about this team,” Barnes said. “The young guys on this team have a lot of grit. When I first got here, we had a rough year. (Tech was 4-8 when Barnes redshirted in 2013.) The young guys this year didn’t let that happen. We needed to get it done to get here, and we got it done. To know there is grit here for the future, even though we’re leaving, I’m excited to watch it.”

This year's senior class is comprised of Jonathan Barnes, Elliott Blankenship, Deldrick Canty, Secdrick Cooper, Jarred Craft, Roland Dunn, Russell Farris, Cedric Johnson, Demarion King, Ronald Lewis, Cameron Linck, Quanta Moore, DeJuawn Oliver, Josh Outlaw, Boston Scott, Tyler Spears, and Marlon Watts.

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