Duane Nash is our resident HBCU expert and operator of The Yard-HBCU Sports. You can follow Duane — like 7,000 other big-time HBCU fans have — on Twitter @TheYardHBCU. Duane will give readers weekly insight into what teams will win the big games, which individuals are in contention for big honors … and much, much more.
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As we prepare for Week Three of the college football season, the watch list of Jones Trophy candidates is in flux, as expected. This version of the list is very quarterback heavy but there’s also an appearance from an unexpected candidate. With this week being the final weekend before conference play begins for most of these teams, the only thing that will be constant about this list is change.
HBCU PICKS: Duane's Picks For Week Three
Let’s look at Duane's Top 5
1. Aqeel Glass, Junior, Quarterback, Alabama A&M
Week Two Stats: 352 Pass Yds, 2TDs, Int
2019 Stats: 749 Pass Yds, 6 TDs, 3 INTs
Next Game: at North Alabama (1-1)
This is the second week in a row that Glass has passed for 300/2TDs. At this pace, he can finish the season with 3,000 passing yards and 30 touchdowns. Expect to see Aqeel in the Top 5 again next week if he’s able to put up at least 250/2 against a Lions pass defense that’s currently allowing 240 yards per game.
2. Chris Rowland, Senior, Wide Receiver, Tennessee State
Week Two Stats: 11 Rec, 202 Rec Yds, 2TD
2019 Stats: 22 Rec, 374 Rec Yds, 3 Rec TD
Next Game: vs Jackson State (0-2)
The Rowland Brothers of Tennessee State (Seth and Chris) gained 299 of total offense last week but it was Chris’ 11 catches and over 180 receiving yards over the last two games that has made him stand out as an early favorite in the Jones Award race. Was shocked to see that the 0-2 Jackson State Tigers have the best pass defense in the SWAC. I’m interested in seeing how the Tennessee State pass attack (295 Yds/Gm) will fair in The Southern Heritage Classic.
3. DeAndre Johnson, Senior, Quarterback, Texas Southern
Week Two Stats: 331 Pass Yds, 3TDs, Int
2019 Stats: 590 Pass Yds, 5 TDs, 2 INTs
Next Game: at Louisiana (1-1)
Yes, THAT DeAndre Johnson. The Tigers were able to put up 44 points in a loss to Incarnate Word last week. This week, TSU will face FBS Louisiana. And with that TSU defense giving up over 1,300 yards and 100 points in two games, I expect Johnson to have a lot of opportunities to elevate his stats.
4. Juwan Carter, Junior, Quarterback, Norfolk State
Week Two Stats: 203 Pass Yds, 4TDs
2019 Stats: 483 Total Yds (402 Pass), 7 Total TDs, 2 INTs
Next Game: at Coastal Carolina (1-1)
The current MEAC leader in passing and total offense after two weeks, Carter tossed touchdowns to four different receivers in their victory over rival Virginia State. With Coastal Carolina coming up this weekend, I expect Carter to have a pass percentage of at least 65% but total passing yards of under 200 – the Chanticleers allow 148 yards per game, second best in the Sun Belt, but allow a conference-low
completion percentage of 81%.
5. Hosea Franklin, Sophomore, Running Back, Lincoln (Mo)
Week Two Stats: 20 Car, 277 All-Purpose Yds (251 Rush), 2TDs
2019 Stats: 20 Car, 277 All-Purpose Yds (251 Rush), 2TDs
Next Game: vs Missouri Southern
Are players from Lincoln (Mo) up for consideration for the Jones Award? It is an HBCU. It is also a Division II school, just like those that participate in the CIAA and SWAC. I only ask because I don’t see any of their players on the original Watch List for the award. And after his performance last weekend, Hosea has made my list. With one game in the books, the sophomore running back leads the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association in rushing and all-purpose yards.
Other standouts from the week of September 5-8:
QB KHA'Darris Davis, R-Junior, Alabama State
20/30, 347 Pass Yds, 4 TDs, Int
RB Niko Duffey, Freshman, Alcorn State
13 Car, 176 All-Purpose Yds (138 Rush), 3 Total TDs
WR Tabyus Taylor, Senior, Virginia Union
25 Car, 255 All-Purpose Yds (159 Rush), TD
RB Keshawn Williams, R-Senior, Arkansas-Pine Bluff
20 Car, 301 All-Purpose Yds (201 Yds)
WR Michael Jefferson, Sophomore, Alabama State
5 Rec, 174 Rec Yds, 3 TDs
WR Tren’Davian Dickson, R-Sophomore, Texas Southern
8 Rec, 221 Rec Yds, 2 TDs
WR Charles Hall, Sophomore, Virginia Union
3 Rec, 152 Yds, 3 TDs
WR Kyle Anthony, Senior, Howard
10 Rec, 146 Yds, 3 TDs
WR Harry Ballard III, Junior, Arkansas-Pine Bluff
4 Rec, 132 Yds, 3 TDs
DB Tayonte McKenzie, Sophomore, Lincoln (Pa)
7 Ret, 222 Yds, 6 Tot Tkls, 2 Pass Def
DL Demetrice Lofton, Freshman, Morehouse
9 Tot Tkls, 3.5 Sk
LB Kwantay Stanley, Sophomore, Central State
14 Tot Tkls (8 Solo), Sk, 2 Pass Def
LB Anthony Howard, R-Senior, Bowie State
8 Tot Tkls, 1.0 Sk, FF, Pass Def