Tyrell Adams admits it can be tempting to not get caught up in the hype surrounding the West Georgia football team.
The Wolves are in the midst of one of the best seasons in program history, unbeaten through five games and among the best teams in the country in NCAA Division II.
It’s not easy. Every week people are telling us how we are making history. The coaches do a great job of keeping us focused. We’ve had a good start, but the success just makes me want to work even harder.
“It’s not easy. Every week people are telling us how we are making history,” said Adams, a senior linebacker who has been instrumental in the Wolves’ success. “The coaches do a great job of keeping us focused. We’ve had a good start, but the success just makes me want to work even harder.”
It’s been a great ride so far for Adams, who is savoring every moment of this success. He has seen his share of tough moments here. As a freshman, he was part of a West Georgia team that went 6-4. The Wolves were 3-7 in 2012 and went 6-5 last year.
But under first-year head coach Will Hall, who spent three years at West Alabama and led the school to a pair of Gulf South Conference championships, the Wolves have turned things around in a hurry.
Adams said teamwork has played a big part in that turnaround.
“We have been very unselfish, and we just play so well together,” Adams said. “Everyone has a role and not only are we great teammates, but we are great friends off the field, too.”
Adams has emerged as one of the leaders of the team after a breakout junior season. He racked up 81 tackles last season en route to earning All-GSC honors and was tied for the team lead in tackles through five games this year with Laronji Vason, tallying 30 tackles.
In his first two seasons, he made a total of 47 tackles. Adams said he has put in a lot of time to improve himself as a player, including working on his technique. He’s also done a tremendous job of being a leader.
“I feel like I’ve gotten better every year,” Adams said. “It’s great being a leader, being one of those guys the younger players look up, too. I saw how the older players were when I was on the team, and I tried to follow their example. Now, I’m the one showing other guys what you have to do to be successful.”
Not only is Adams a great example on the field, he is a great one off it as he gets the job done in the classroom as well.
“A lot of time goes into both school and football, but if you learn how to manage everything that goes into both, you are going to be successful on the field and in school,” Adams said. “Doing well in school is just as important as having success on the field.”
Adams is part of a defense that has given up just 45 points through five games. The Wolves have posted two shutouts and are allowing only 233.2 yards per game.
In addition to Adams and Vason, Alex Armah (23 tackles) and Dalvon Stuckey (19 tackles) have been among the key players for the Wolves. A total of 16 players have 10 or more tackles. Offensively, West Georgia has scored at least 26 points in its first five games and is putting up an average of 406.2 yards per game.
We have a lot of talent on our defense and we do a great job of work together to get stops. A lot of guys are making plays every week.
“We have a lot of talent on our defense and we do a great job of work together to get stops,” Adams said. “A lot of guys are making plays every week.”
But as good as the Wolves have been, there is room for improvement. West Georgia has its eyes on a GSC championship and a playoff berth.
“We have to be more consistent,” Adams said. “There are games where we’ve made minor mistakes and haven’t always done the little things right. We know we have the potential to win a championship and get to the playoffs, but to be in that position at the end, we need to stay focused and continue to get better every week.”
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