Friday, August 23, 2013

Powder Springs pipeline working for Huskies

One more item about UConn's two-deep chart is the Powder Springs, Ga. representation.

Early in camp I was struck by the fact that there were three players from Powder Springs, Ga. on the roster. What's even more impressive is that all three made it into the two-deep Taylor Mack is a starting cornerback while offensive tackle Xavier Hemingway and linebacker Jefferson Ashiru are listed as second-team players.

I wrote a story which was supposed to run in today's paper but it got pushed back due to a lack of space. I am hoping it will run in tomorrow's paper.

Mack was the first of the Powder Springs trio to arrive at UConn and he was excited to here that two players from his hometown were coming to UConn.

“We go in the locker room and always talk about stuff in Atlanta, we go back home and always hit each other up to go work out and stuff like that," Mack said. "It is a blessing to have other people from your hometown, so you never really get homesick.”

Starting quarterback Chandler Whitmer is from Newnan, No. 1 receiver Geremy Davis hails from Lawrenceville and defensive backs Andrew Adams and David Stevenson grew up in Fayetteville and Stone Mountain. The impact of the Georgia imports could be something special this season.

“It’s good,” Mack said. “We have big counties so football is real competitive. We have a good following and everybody takes football real serious. It is real football and you can start fights in the parking lot about it if somebody says the wrong thing about your school.”

Perhaps the most stunning aspect of the Powder Springs connection is that Mack knew little of either Ashiru or Hemingway before they headed to Storrs.

“I didn’t know (Mack),” Ashiru said, “I still don’t know where he lives.”

Of course there was a stronger pre-UConn bond for Ashiru and Hemingway, who were teammates as McEachern High.

“Xavier Hemingway, he came from my school and we came here together,” Ashiru said. “It’s a good little connection I guess, and we will keep in touch.”


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