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Texas A&M

#5 RB Traveyon Williams
Traveyon became the 4th Aggie to register multiple 200 yard rushing games in Week 1. He told me that it was a very emotional game for him because last year at this time his family was in serious danger in his hometown of Houston during Hurricane Harvey. His mother Joyce Davis told me that her family walked through waist deep water, were picked up by a boat, taken to a gas station, then rode in the back of a dump truck to a Wal-Mart parking lot, where they waited for a school bus to drive them 6 hours to a shelter, and once they were there they had to sleep outside. On Monday of week one a season ago the extended family of 10 made it to a hotel where they were forced to stay for 4 months. When they arrived, they FaceTimed Trayveon and told him that they were okay and that they wanted him to focus on the week of preparation. Trayveon says he still thinks about what his family went through every time he takes the field because the emotions still come rushing back. Here are pictures of his family making their way to safety and  eventually FaceTiming Trayveon from their hotel room: 

#11 Kellon Mond Adjusting to Pro Style Offense
Kellon Mond said when he heard that Jimbo Fisher was going to be his new head coach he called some of his former high school teammates that played for Jimbo at FSU. Seminole Tre McKitty told him that Fisher was going to coach him hard and have high expectations. This is Kellon’s first season ever taking snaps under center and he said he is treating learning this offense like taking a class and learning a new subject. He said the biggest change he has had to make doesn’t even come on the field. It comes in the film room. He said his new nightly routine involves 2-3 hours of film study he also always has his iPad with him. He said Coach Fisher has taught him how to break the game down to smallest detail. And Kellon said that he is much more confident this season because he really feels like his knowledge of the game has grown and that he will be able to rely on that when times get tough. 

Kellon Mond and Deshaun Watson
Kellon said it will be surreal playing Clemson because Deshaun Watson has always been an idol of his and someone that he looks up too. They met once in Houston at a concert and he also met him in Clemson during his sophomore year of high school. Mond says he loves his accuracy and ability to make plays out of the pocket. But what Kellon wants to model his game after is the way Watson processes the game. Mond says he envies what an intelligent quarterback Watson is and the way nothing rattles him. “He seems confident 24/7”. Mond says that’s what he wants defenses and his team to see in his demeanor.

Team’s First Impression of Jimbo
Kellon Mond told me that when Jimbo first met with the whole team that it was the quietest he has ever heard the meeting room. He said “it is something we will all remember”. Coach explained to the players that it would take “blind trust”. Trayveon Williams said when he first found out that Sumlin was leaving he was mad. But now he thinks having Jimbo as a head coach “is the best thing that could have happened”. Williams said Coach has brought toughness, effort, and discipline. Williams said Coach Fisher told the team that he has won championships and he fully expects to win them in College Station and that the process starts now so everyone better buy in or get left behind. 

Clemson

#8 Justyn Ross and Clemson WR Legacy
Ross says the reason why he wanted to play for Clemson is because of the Wide Receiver tradition. He says that his favorite wide receiver and the guy who he believes he is the most similar to is Mike Williams. He said Williams is big strong and quick for his size. Ross has put on about 15 pounds since arriving on campus and he has already made some great one-handed catches in HS, and during the spring at Clemson. Justyn says he doesn’t practice the one-handed catch and that he honestly surprises himself sometimes.

His catch during Clemson’s camp got the attention of former WR Deandre Hopkins:

One of Justyn Ross’s catches in HS was an SC top 10 play:

Justyn Ross and Military Mom
Justyn’s mom Charay Franklin enlisted I the Navy in 2000. She has been on 4 tours of duty. One to Kuwait and 3 to Iraq for Operation Enduring Freedom. Justyn says that when his mother was on tour his grandmother Annetta Franklin would keep him. Charay is currently a Sergeant in the Army, serving as a reservist in the Alabama National Guard. Mom says that during the recruiting process she did not know how good her son was. She knew that a lot of programs were interested in him but that it did not all click until he signed his letter of intent.  

Kelly Bryant on Sharing QB Snaps
Kelly said that coach sat them down and said that he would be the starter in game one and that Trevor would also play. Bryant said that he already knew that he would be sharing snaps with Lawrence because he knew that the true freshman had an amazing camp and you “can’t take anything away from him he has learned the whole offense”. Kelly says that he had the right mindset going into the first game. “When I am out there I am doing my job, when I am not I am being Trevor’s biggest supporter and talking about what we have seen, I will always be engaged.” I love the maturity he shows when answering questions about how his career has progressed at Clemson and what he would tell a younger player who may go through the same thing: 

Substitute Teacher Christian Wilkins
During the Spring Christian Wilkins decided to become a substitute teacher. He has already graduated and all of his master’s classes are online so he had some extra time on his hand. One of his brothers is a full-time teacher and another brother is a sub and Christian thought it would be a great way to make extra money. He went through the interview process and actually subbed about 10-15 times. He has done elementary school and high school, but has filled in for Kindergarten and pre-k classes more than anything. Christian said he felt like Arnold Schwarzenegger in Kindergarten cop because they would swarm him and want to play. Principal Ashley Robertson of James M. Brown Elementary said that the number one thing that stood out to her about wilkins was that he was very professional. She said when she walked him down to the room he was a little nervous before entering. She said it was adorable to see him sitting in tiny kindergarten chairs, or laying on the floor playing bingo games with the kinds. She said the one picture she wishes she could have taken was Christian walking with one student who was sick holding their hand and leading them down the hall. James M. Brown is a title 1 school with a high poverty level, 88% of the students are on free or reduced lunch, Robertson said having the kids around Wilkins was an invaluable experience for the students. Picture of Christian at James M. Brown Elementary.

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