CHRIS MOORE — Area football players impressing during the college season
Published 12:04 am Wednesday, October 19, 2022
Each week it is pretty surreal to watch Port Neches-Groves grad Roschon Johnson get big minutes and play well for the Texas Longhorns.
During the summer and throughout the start of the season, Texas Head Coach Steve Sarkisian gushed about what Johnson means to the program. Even broadcasters glowingly talk about his work ethic and leadership during games, which comes as no surprise to those who watched him in high school and before.
He finished last week’s game with 11 carries for 77 yards.
Texas might be back and a lot of people are giving the PNG grad at least partial credit for that. It is unfortunate to think he might be gone a year before Texas has a real shot to make a run at a national championship.
Over the weekend, an analyst said he was talking to NFL executives who compared Johnson to Priest Holmes, who was the backup to Ricky Williams. Johnson backs up Bijan Robinson, who is a consensus first-round pick.
Holmes went undrafted and ended up having a very successful NFL career. There is growing sentiment that Johnson will be drafted, with some experts having him going Day 2 of the draft in the second or third round.
But Roschon wasn’t the only Southeast Texas native who saw some camera time in the 24-21 Texas win over Iowa State.
At the end of the game, Iowa State was driving and within field goal range, which would’ve tied the game, when the quarterback fumbled the ball. In the scrum, Memorial grad and freshman Longhorns defensive back Jaylon Guilbeau was in the middle of the fray and part of the reason Texas recovered the loose ball to secure the win.
He has also seen significant playing time as a true freshman on a talented squad. He will be fun to keep an eye on over the next few years on what seems to be an increasingly interesting Texas team.
A little closer to home, the Lamar Cardinals have not had too much to smile about this season. The Cards are 0-6 on the season and in last place in the Southland, but there is at least one bright spot on the team.
Former Nederland receiver Kyndon Fuselier has been one of the best players in Bulldogs history. After his epic junior campaign, it appeared there would be several colleges offering a scholarship to get him on their squads.
In his senior season, the Bulldogs did not have the offensive firepower, allowing defenses to try and key in on Fuselier. It was also rumored his 40-time did not impress college scouts, even though the film would more than prove his ability on the field.
With no offers, Fuselier took a preferred walk-on role with Lamar.
As a freshman for the Cards, Fuselier has recorded four catches for 128 and one touchdown, averaging 28 yards per catch. His best game was against Houston Christian, where he recorded catches of 34, 44 and 26 yards and drew a pass interference call.
If he is able to close out the season strong, it could set him up for a big year next year or put him in position to transfer out if another college sees a potential fit.
I know there are plenty more local college players doing well at their respective schools, but these are a few that stuck out to me lately.
Chris Moore is the sports editor for Port Arthur Newsmedia. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.