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Wednesday, October 01, 2014
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(Rick Hickman/American Press)

(Rick Hickman/American Press)

SLC Media Day Notebook

Last Modified: Thursday, July 24, 2014 11:48 AM

By Alex Hickey / American Press

For the past three years, trying to get an interview with Everett Ellefsen has been akin to tracking down a white buffalo.

So even with his many accolades coming into the season, it was a mild surprise that the all-conference defensive end was one of McNeese’s two players at media day, along with offensive lineman Antoine Everett.

But Ellefsen accepts that he is one of the faces of the team this year, and as such he must also function as one of the mouthpieces.

“Whenever you guys come for interviews, I might kind of duck out a little bit or might show up a little later to meetings that day,” Ellefsen said. “I’m getting a little used to it. Antoine too; really our whole class in general, we’re not very talkative. We’re more about leader by example. But as we get older, we understand we have to be a little more vocal and do stuff like this.

“I’m definitely growing a little more and getting more used to this. So every Monday I’ll talk (to the media).”

l

QUOTE MACHINE: At the opposite end of the interview-willingness scale stands new Sam Houston State coach K.C. Keeler, who was the breakout star behind the microphone on Wednesday.

When asked about Sam Houston’s Week 3 game at LSU, Keeler responded, “I heard Les Miles hasn’t slept a wink since I was hired.”

The former Delaware player and coach is also finding Texas to be a slightly more fertile recruiting ground than his former state.

“Coach (Dick) Vermeil called me after I got the job and said ‘You’re living the dream as a college coach in Texas,’” Keeler said. “For example, we had three one-day camps this summer. The talent pool was beyond my wildest dreams. We looked at 60 defensive backs we’d offer. In my Delaware days, if we found 10 from that same-sized talent pool, we’d be excited.”

l RICKY IS THE WORD:

A name like Ricky Williams seems like a pretty big fish for a small school like Incarnate Word to land as its running backs coach.

Cardinals coach Larry Kennan knows this.

“The biggest problem we face is no one knew who we were,” Kennan said. “When we walk in a home and bring Ricky Williams with us it is a big deal. He is probably still the biggest celebrity in Texas football.”

Williams and Kennan connect well because of their similar personalities.

“Ricky’s an introvert, as I am,” Kennan said. “I’ll talk about family, football and close friends and not much else. I’m kind of a shy person, as he is. But it isn’t about how much you talk. It’s what you say. Introverts are really good listeners. And Ricky’s a very good listener.”

l HAIRY SITUATION:

As a first-year member of the Southland, Abilene Christian may not lead the league in many categories this season.

However, it did appear to be the runaway leader for “most hair” at media day.

Defensive end Nick Richardson sported long dreadlocks, and tight end Jonathan Parker’s impressive mane is shoulder length.

“Coach usually gives us a pretty hard time about the hair,” Parker said. “If you’re a Bible buff, you’re familiar with Samson and how he took the Nazarite vow, and he jokes that’s what we’re doing.”

Richardson added, “The atmosphere is very relaxed (at ACU). If you think we look rough, you should see some of the other guys. They’ve got full beards out to here.”

l TOUGH ROAD TO HOE: Nicholls State once again has the toughest schedule in the conference, playing a league-high three Football Bowl Subdivision opponents — Air Force, Arkansas and North Texas.

In addition, five of the Colonels’ first six games are away from Thibodaux.

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