Five Indians ink gridiron offers

ON TO THE NEXT LEVEL – Five members of the 2008 Hazlehurst Indians football playoff team signed with colleges last Tuesday. From left are Fred Fuller, Kristoffer Williams, Justin Durr and Warren Perry. Not pictured is Joseph Bonner. Standing with his former players who are all scheduled to graduate in May is head coach Todd McDaniel.

Joseph Bonner

The pipeline continues for colleges who sign local football talent produced by the Hazlehurst Indians.

On National Signing Day last Wednesday, five team members solidified their intentions to continue on to the next level by signing to play with area colleges.

Stellar running back Fred Fuller, 5’9”, 187 lbs., will play for the Alcorn State University Braves beginning this fall.  Fuller made an impact his freshman season, helping the Indians finish 13-0 with a state 3A championship.  In 2008, he led Hazlehurst with 1,787 yards on 191 carries–an average of just over 9.35 yards-per-carry.  He found the end zone 25 times, also leading the Indians.

Fuller is leaning toward an engineering degree, but has not officially declared his college major.  He was a member of the first-ever Copiah County Courier Super 7 and a Clarion-Ledger Top 125 recruit.

Kristoffer Williams will be a Hinds CC Eagle in 2009.  The 6’1”, 205 lbs offensive and defensive lineman had 40 tackles, including 7 sacks in 2008.  He was a big factor in the Indians’ resurgence in the last 8 games of 2009. Williams was listed in the Courier’s Others To Watch in the 2008 preseason football issue.

Williams will pursue a degree in Computer Science while playing for the Eagles.

Justin Durr, last year’s quarterback, will be joining Williams at Hinds CC.  Durr, 6’1”, 185 lbs, accounted for 25 total touchdowns, throwing for 22 and rushing for 3.  He was effective with 981 passing yards and 150 rushing in the Indians’ multiple offense.  His scrambling ability helped convert several key third-downs over the season.

Durr will also be pursuing an Engineering degree.

Warren Perry is headed to Co-Lin CC.  The 6’5”, 230 lbs. defensive end/tight end will play for Glen Davis.  In 2008 he recorded 57 tackles, including 8 sacks, and recovered 2 fumbles.

Perry’s desire is to major in physical education.

Perry will be joined at Co-Lin by offensive tackle Joseph Bonner, the other member of the 2008 Copiah County Courier Super 7 from the team.  At 6’5”, 320 lbs., Bonner paved the way for Indian runners in devastating fashion.  In short yardage situations, the Indians’ coaching staff made it no secret that they were going to run behind Bonner.

Bonner’s major is undeclared at this time.

This group of seniors is the lone remaining bunch of the 2005 state champions.  Each year they dedicated themselves to attempting a repeat of that marvelous feat.  In 2008, the Indians made a good late season run to finish 7-2.  After defeating Purvis 60-20 in the first round of the state playoffs, the Indians fell for the second time to Franklin County 38-7.

“We will definitely miss not only these signees, but this entire senior class,” said head coach Todd McDaniel.  “We are proud to see these student-athletes with a good opportunity to pursue higher education because of their talents on the football field.”

McDaniel noted that the Indians will lose a total of 16 seniors and referred to next year’s team as young but talented.

Spring practice begins during late April and finish around the middle of May.

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