By Austin Bishop
The Winston County Journal
Malik Slaughter, Nicholas Shields, Anderson Gund, and Anthony Gund are all aware that the Northwest Mississippi Community College football program has been struggling the past few years.
That’s why the Louisville High School foursome is determined to make a difference when they hit the NWMCC campus in Senatobia this summer to prepare for the 2014 season.
The four Wildcats, members of the 2013 MHSAA Class 3A State Championship team, were among 36 players signed by Northwest Mississippi on National Signing Day on Wednesday.
“Based solely on what was signed today, it’s hard to imagine doing any better,” Northwest first-year head coach Jack Wright said. “We are better today. We improved at every position, especially in the trenches. I couldn’t be prouder of the work our coaching staff invested in this class.”
Among those players in the trenches signed by the Rangers were Slaughter and both Gunds.
“We have got a good chance to play, so I am going to go take my opportunity and take my talent to Northwest,” Slaughter said. “I am trying to play right off he bat. I am going to hit the weights hard, run and do a lot of drills so I will be ready.”
While Slaughter had a good season for the ‘Cats ,he stepped to the forefront in Louisville’s 30-28 championship win over Hazlehurst when he batted down two passes and recorded a safety to help LHS finish the season undefeated at 16-0.
“The Lord blessed me and just put me in the right place at the right time,” he said of his big plays.
Slaughter said he and his LHS teammates hope to help bring a winning attitude back to Northwest Mississippi CC.
“We have got a whole bunch of good recruits and we are going to turn this around quickly,” he said.
Anthony Gund, a 6-foot-5, 235-pound defensive end agrees with Slaughter.
“I like the coaches and the school is really like a university because its so big,” he said. “We are going to go up there and help turn it around.”
While Anthony will be joined on the team by his brother Anderson, a 6-foot-4, 260-pound offensive lineman, he said that each one of them made their own decision.
“We were just gong to do what was best for us, and we both thought that was the place to go,” he said.
“Winning is important to us,” said Anderson Gund. “We are used to winning. I like what they have there and want to be a part of it.”
Defensive back Nicholas Shields said he liked the fact several teammates will be joining him in Senatobia.
“We all visited together and we liked it there,” he said. “The whole possibility of turning the whole thing around is interesting to us.”
See page 13 for photos.