EMCC’s C.J. Bates chosen MACJC Special Teams Player of the Week

From press reports


SCOOBA – For the second time this season, East Mississippi Community College’s C.J. Bates has been named the MACJC/jucoweekly.org Special Teams Player of the Week.  The Lions’ freshman wide receiver earned the league’s weekly honor for scoring his second special teams touchdown of the year in last Thursday’s 55-0 road win over Holmes.

Bates, a former standout at Louisville High School, returned a second-quarter Holmes punt 59 yards for his second punt return for a touchdown on the season.  Along with his 95 yards on four punt returns against the Bulldogs, the 6-foot-2, 190-pound receiver/kick returner also had five receptions for a game-high 87 yards, including a 46-yard catch, a week ago.

Bates, who leads the unbeaten Lions with 24 catches and 378 receiving yards through six games, previously collected the MACJC’s weekly special teams honor following EMCC’s 49-6 season-opening victory at Pearl River.  While accounting for 178 all-purpose yards with four catches for 78 yards and four punt returns for 100 yards against the Wildcats, Bates had a 60-yard scoring catch and added a 62-yard punt return for a score in this year’s opener.

Also garnering MACJC/jucoweekly.org Player of the Week accolades for last week’s performances were freshman quarterback Daniel Fitzwater from Copiah-Lincoln Community College and Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College sophomore linebacker Trey Wafford.

Falling from second to third (behind top-ranked Georgia Military College and No. 2 Jones County JC) in this week’s NJCAA Top 20 national poll, head coach Buddy Stephens’ 6-0 EMCC Lions play host to the Tigers of Northeast Mississippi Community College Thursday (Oct. 10) on the Scooba campus.  The MACJC North Division contest is set for a 7 p.m. kickoff at EMCC’s Sullivan-Windham Field.

Continuing to top the NJCAA’s team statistical leaders in scoring offense as well as scoring defense, East Mississippi is averaging 65.3 points and 615 yards of total offense per game on the year.  With four shutouts defensively through six games, the Lions are limiting their 2013 opposition to an average of just 2.2 points and only 141.7 yards of total offense per contest.  EMCC’s defense has yet to allow a first-half point through the first two-thirds of the regular season.

Of EMCC’s 56 total touchdowns this season, 48 have been equally divided between rushing and passing, while four scores have come by way of pick-six pass interceptions, three via punt returns and one touchdown on a fumble recovery.