Written by Thomas Scott
October 14, 2017
Jackson State is currently sitting in last place in the SWAC East Division with an 0-5 record. The Tigers have lost their last three games to SWAC opponents by an average of 19 points. To make matters even worse, Jackson State has lost 11 straight games dating back to last season.
Today, Jackson State will get a break from SWAC competition. They are scheduled to play SIAC Division II powerhouse, Tuskegee University in the 5th Quarter Classic. Typically, FCS schools like Jackson State are expected to win against Division II opponents. Which begs the question, is the 5th Quarter Classic a must win for Coach Hughes?
There was tons of excitement when Jackson State announced the hiring of Coach Tony Hughes; and for good reason. Hughes is a legend on the Mississippi recruiting scene and after 31 years of assistant coach and recruiting experience he deserved a shot as a head coach.
However, Jackson State has notoriously been impatient with their football coaches in recent history. Prior to hiring Hughes, Jackson State went through four coaches in four seasons. Coach Hughes said it best:
“At Jackson State, there’s nothing else acceptable except winning championships or playing for championships; that’s the standard. Getting this program back to that point is the only thing really acceptable.”
Jackson State is completely out of championship contention this season. Which isn’t totally surprising. Rebuilding takes patience. Yet, with each loss one must wonder if the patience in Jackson is running thin.
Their record may not show it, but the Tigers have shown improvement under Coach Hughes. While it may not fully silence critics, a win against Tuskegee would be a much needed step in the right direction.
How to Watch
Kickoff for the 5th Quarter Classic begins at 6pm CST. The game can be heard live on the Tuskegee Digitial Network.