It’s particularly tough when you have a resume filled with blank spaces due to some personal mishaps.
But Adrien Jenkins took that risk and it paid huge dividends when he ran for a collegiate career record 168 yards and two touchdowns on only 14 carries in sparking the University of Charleston to a 49-35 victory over Seton Hill last Saturday.
In Charleston’s previous game, the Southeast High product did not touch the ball. He went to the coaches and asked them to give him more of a role in the offense.
“I didn’t demand the ball. I don’t like to do that. I just asked for a bigger role than just blocking,” Jenkins said. “I felt like I could be a playmaker and if they didn’t want me in that role I wanted to go to defense. Fortunately they gave me the opportunity. I felt like my old self again, the one that played for Southeast.”
Jenkins 14 yard per carry average was impressive. The junior had touchdown runs of 52 and 26 yards, which were the two longest of the game for Charleston.
Another Southeast product, defensive back Kieron James, is having a solid year for FCS Western Illinois. The junior is fourth in the Missouri Valley Conference with five passes defended and leads the Leathernecks with 1.5 sacks, four pass breakups and four deflections, and has 17 tackles.
Receiver Charles Chestnut and offensive lineman Enock Presendieu, also from Southeast, have made key contributions to WIU.