What transpired in the final three minutes against Grambling State cost Jackson State a chance at the black national championship and may have ended the tenure of Rick Comegy as head coach.
It is a harsh reality those associated with the program have to face as they try to digest a frustrating 26-23 loss to Grambling State.
With a timeout in hand and the ball resting just inside the Grambling 15-yard line with less than 10 seconds left, the Jackson State offense, led by reigning Southwestern Athletic Conference Player of the Week, Casey Therriault, ran a passing play instead of stopping the game clock as it ticked away the final precious seconds.
Incomplete pass. Ballgame. No brass ring.
I don’t know if there was miscommunication, confusion or the JSU coaching staff believing they could take one more shot at the end zone before rushing on the field goal unit. Whatever the case was Comegy took full responsibility for the development.
“I’m the captain so I take the blame,” Comegy told the assembled media following the game. We wanted to get another shot at it before we called the last timeout to put our field goal team in.”
Prior to Jackson State’s final drive with them up 23-19, freshman punt returner Antonio Sutton inexplicably attempted to field a bouncing Grambling punt inside his own 20, in which he muffed and was recovered by the Tigers.
A couple of plays later, Grambling running back Dawrence Roberts, who rushed for 201 yards, rumbled 10 yards for a touchdown to give his team the lead for good.
All those who wanted the JSU administration to give Comegy a contract extension because the APR numbers improved have been silenced. Coaches are hired to win football games. Period.
And with athletic director Vivian Fuller’s seemingly non-committal to Comegy for next season and beyond, he might be coaching out the string.
A black national title might have given him the leverage needed to remain head coach. As of today that no longer exists just like the Tigers short stint as the No. 1 team in all of Black College Football. The season and maybe a career took a 180-degree turn in 180 seconds.
Quote of the Week:
“This week we were really focused and wanted to come back out and put a good game together,” said Alabama State head coach Reggie Barlow after the Hornets 28-12 win over Arkansas-Pine Bluff. “I thought in all three phases we did some positive things and we were able to come away with a victory.”
Player of the Week:
Grambling State running back Dawrence Roberts who rushed for 201 yards, and the game-winning touchdown as the Tigers knocked off Jackson State 26-23.
Week 10 Report Card
Grambling State: A
After stunning Jackson State on the road, the Tigers find themselves in first-place in the SWAC Western Division.
Jackson State: D
Their second loss of the season dashed their hopes of winning a black national championship.
Alabama State: A
Quarterback Devin Dominguez threw for 254 yards and a touchdowns as the Hornets rolled over Arkansas-Pine Bluff.
Arkansas-Pine Bluff: D-
After starting the season 3-1, the Golden Lions have lost three of their last four games.
Alcorn State: C
The Braves played Alabama A&M tough, but just could not make the big plays on defense when it mattered.
Prairie View: C
The Panthers racked up more than 400 yards of total offense. However, they were unable to gain control late in a wild non-conference road game.
Alabama A&M: B
It was a struggle for the Bulldogs for most of the game against Alcorn State. A pair of late touchdowns by Deaunte Mason and Kaderius Lacey help seal A&M’s seventh consecutive win.
The Jaguars tough season continues with another loss
Texas Southern: C
The Tigers were able to bounce back after losing to winless Mississippi Valley.
Mississippi Valley State: F
A 35-3 loss at South Alabama leaves the Delta Devils back at square one.