The Richmond Register

November 15, 2013

OVC FOOTBALL: Seniors holding firm to beard pact

By Nathan Hutchinson
Register Sports Editor

RICHMOND — When Tyler Horn was asked to be in teammate Nathan Watts’ wedding this past summer, he thought it would be only appropriate to shave off his beard.

Watts was quick to reject that idea.

“He told me, ‘Don’t you dare!’” Horn said “So, right after his wedding, I shaved my beard and after that we said no more.”

Following the wedding, Watts, Horn and Ryan Bonner joined into a pact.

A beard pact.

The three Colonel seniors haven’t shaved since.

The trio now features some of the thickest, fullest and most unique facial hair on this year’s EKU football team.

They are, however, not alone.

Several other players have also grown out some rather interesting beards, including sophomore linebacker Chris Kelly and senior offensive lineman Justin Meredith.

But, no one on the team has a heakthier collection of facial hair than senior center Austin Jaggers.

“Austin has a beard that runs from his ankle to his eyeballs,” Horn said. “He’s got that contest won. He probably has more facial hair than I have hair on my head.”

And just how long is Jaggers’ facial hair?

“The other day at a meeting, he got it in his eye,” EKU coach Dean Hood said of Jaggers.

And it appears those seniors have started a trend that some of the younger players are starting to follow.

“Now you are seeing a lot of freshman offensive lineman starting to grow their hair out,” Horn said. “So, it will be interesting to see what this team will look like in a few years.”

Futures take center stage

Every week prior to home games, the EKU coaching staff puts its younger players on the field Friday afternoon for a scrimmage at Roy Kidd Stadium.

This gives the student-athletes who are redshirting or on the scout team a chance to run the Colonels’ offense and defense in a competitive situation.

The intra-squad exhibition, known as a Futures Game, usually lasts about 50 plays, or roughly two quarters.

For this year’s final scrimmage, the EKU coaching staff want to do a little something different.

“I said let’s amp it up for these guys and try to make a bigger deal out of it,” Hood said. “Let’s see if we can get some people out there for it. Play some pregame music and that type of thing.”

EKU’s Futures Bowl is set for 4 p.m. today.

The squad will split into offensive and defensive teams with graduate assistant Brad Queen coaching the offense and graduate assistant Chris Cunningham leading the defense.