FAYETTEVILLE, NC - National Signing Day went as well as one could expect for the Fayetteville State University football team and Head Coach Lawrence Kershaw on Wednesday. The Broncos landed 13 recruits' National Letters of Intent, with a couple more signings potentially on the way.

"Last year when we came in, we got a late start and I thought we did a good job of recruiting," said Kershaw, who went 6-4 in his first season as FSU head coach. "This year, we were able to start early and get some guys to a couple of our games. We got out in front of it."

There were a couple key areas the Broncos wanted to strengthen. One of those is wide receiver, and the FSU staff clearly stocked its roster at that position. FSU inked four receivers on Signing Day.

"For us offensively, we're a four-wide offense," Kershaw said. "We have to have an abundance of wide receivers. We probably have four or five guys that'll have 500 receiving yards or more."

Marcus Jenkins was the first of the 2014 class to officially commit to the Broncos, faxing in his National Letter of Intent at 8:27 am. Jenkins, a 5-foot-10, 175-pound wide receiver from Asheville, NC, and TC Roberson High School, is very quick and made plays out of the slot while in high school.

As his highlight reel shows, Jenkins is tough to bring down when given space in the open field; such as on screens. He also returned kicks and punts and runs track & field.

Jenkins caught 62 passes for 879 yards and 12 touchdowns during his senior year of high school ball.

Marcus Jenkins Online Profile


Fred McDuffie sent in his Letter of Intent shortly after Jenkins. McDuffie, a 6-foot 190-pound wide receiver from Southeast Raleigh High School, was an All-Conference performer in high school. A possessor of a 4.41 40-yard dash time, McDuffie has breakaway speed when given space.

In an upset of Clayton High School last season, McDuffie caught a 48-yard touchdown pass and returned a kick 99 yards for a score. He is a sprinter and a basketball player in high school, as well.

"He's a bigger guy who makes plays all over the field," said Calvin Randall, FSU's receivers coach.

Fred McDuffie Online Profile

Avery Redden, a 6-foot 175-pound receiver from Pine Forest High School in Fayetteville, committed on Wednesday. Redden is a three-year basketball letterman who played just one season of high school football.

In that season, though, Redden excelled enough to get noticed by the Fayetteville State coaching staff. His highlight reel shows he quickly learned the ability to get open, make people miss and fight through tackles.

Redden finished his senior season with 47 catches, 665 receiving yards and six touchdown receptions. FSU coach Lawrence Kershaw believes that as Redden continues to learn the game of football, he can excel at the college level.

"He doesn't have a whole lot of experience but look at his film," Kershaw said. "He can play. He can run and jump; he's fast. He just fits the bill at that spot."

"He's very athletic," Randall said. "He was a forward on the basketball team. His ability to go up and get the football is outstanding."

Avery Redden Online Profile

Maleek Gorham also joined the program at wide-out. Gorham, who stands 5-foot-11 and 165 pounds, played running back and cornerback and returned punts and kicks at D.H. Conley High School (Greenville, NC). His highlight tape is full of outstanding runs.

At FSU, he will shift to the wide receiver position; where FSU coach Lawrence Kershaw believes his speed and cutting ability can excel. As a senior, Gorham gained 394 yards on 56 carries in six games. He also scored five times on the ground.

Gorham led Conley in receiving yards despite just catching three passes. Those receptions totaled 176 yards (58.7 yards per catch) and one touchdown.

"He's dangerous as soon as he catches the football," Randall said. "He's an unbelievable playmaker with great speed."

Speed is one common trait for all these receivers. It's a product of Kershaw's four-wide offense to spread the field and coach believes they'll each be able to do so at the college level.

"They're fast," Kershaw said. "That's the No. 1 thing we look for: speed. You've got to be able to run and make plays. We want guys that are fast and guys that are athletic."

Maleek Gorham Online Profile

Athleticism describes Brenton Flowers perfectly. Flowers, a six-foot 170-poud quarterback from Richmond Senior High School, ran a 4.56 40-yard dash and participate in track and field. As evidenced by his highlights, Flowers has the ability to both throw on the run and create plays with his feet.

In his senior year, Flowers completed 50-of-106 passes for 948 yards, nine touchdowns and just one interception. He was lethal when he carried the football, compiling 832 yards on 89 carries. He scored 10 touchdowns on the ground.


"He's a very smart young man and a big-time leader," said Randall, who also coaches the quarterbacks.

Brenton Flowers Online Profile

Raquan Jones, a 6-foot-1 180-pound defensive back from Eastern Guilford High School in Gibsonville, NC, joins the FSU secondary. He is a tall corner that will be an obstacle for opposing quarterbacks.

Jones shifted from wide receiver to free safety and to defensive back in his senior season and was dominant at all three positions. He finished the year with 100 tackles, four interceptions, five passes defended, a sack and three receiving touchdowns. He was named his team's offensive player of the year.

He'll be used as a defensive back at FSU, where Broncos coach Lawrence Kershaw believes his speed and coverage ability can flourish.

"He has the size and athletic ability to be a big-time player," defensive coordinator Errick Hargrove said.

"He's a cover corner," Kershaw said. "He can get it done there. Anytime you can get a 6-1, 6-2 corner that helps. It makes it tough for a quarterback to throw over him."

Raquan Jones Online Profile 

Ralphael Bernard is a 6-foot-3, 285-pound defensive lineman from Garden City Junior College in Raleigh, NC.

He has the ability to clog up running lanes with his frame and also rush the passer. He had 44 tackles in just seven games last season; while also recording two sacks.

Raphael Bernard Online Profile


Joining Bernard on the line will be 6-foot-5, 275-pound defensive tackle Daseion Cole. Cole's highlights show a defensive tackle that is proficient at eating up running lanes of opposing offenses.

His experience blends well with the high school seniors that will be coming into the program.

Deseion Cole Online Profile 

Justin Hooks is a 6-foot-4 defensive lineman from Southeast Guilford High School in Greensboro, NC. Hooks averaged four tackles per game last season and figures to be a force on the outside edge of the pass rush at the college level.

At Southeast Guilford, he played end and frequently made things difficult for the opposing quarterback with pressure or batted balls at the line of scrimmage.

Justin Hooks Online Profile 

James York comes to Fayetteville State from College of the Desert (California), where the 6-foot-5 240-pounder saw most of his time at defensive end.

At FSU, York will move to outside linebacker and still see time on the line in different formations. Theron Jones, the outside linebackers coach at FSU, is excited by York's potential. He believes York can step in and provide an immediate impact.

"He's athletic and physical," Jones said. "He's a guy who can stand up or put his hand down. He brings in a good blend that will go with the younger players we have coming in. We believe he'll make his mark on Bronco football immediately."

"We're beefing up the defensive line," Kershaw said. "Bernard and Cole fill an immediate need for us. We needed to get bigger and they fit the bill. James York is an outside backer; but he's just a superior, talented kid. We're really looking for him to come in and have a big year."

James York Online Profile


Jertaves Jenkins joins the FSU program out of South Central High School in Winterville, NC. Jenkins had some Division I interest but chose the Broncos, where he could immediately make his presence felt.

At 6-foot-2 and 215 pounds, Jenkins has the prototypical frame for an outside linebacker; the position he'll play at Fayetteville State. He also saw some time at running back while at South Central.

"He's a big, tall kid," outside linebackers coach Theron Jones said. "He fits the mold we're looking for. We expect an immediate impact. Anytime you can get a high-caliber kid, you're excited by him being in your program."

Jertaves Jenkins Online Profile


FSU also landing the commitment of Scotland County High School (Laurinburg, NC)'s Marquis Williams.

Williams, a 6-foot-2 220-pound middle linebacker, had 117 tackles for the Fighting Scots team that went 15-1 and advanced all the way to the 4A state championship game.

His ability to lead a defense and read the play as its developing is clearly present on his highlight reel.

Marquis Williams Online Profile 


Last but not least, the Broncos inked the commitment of Brian Jones, a 6-foot 280-pound center from Santa Rosa Junior College.

With Jones, FSU gets a quick big offensive lineman that Kershaw hopes can pay big dividends for the Broncos.

"He's very physical," Kershaw said. "He's extremely quick and he's extremely physical. He has a high motor. When we looked at him on film, we knew we had to go after him."

Brian Jones Online Profile


The FSU football staff believes, it was a good class designed to both fill any minor holes and have this team in position to compete for a CIAA championship.

"We're in good shape," Kershaw said. "We just had to fill a few holes. Now we're in good shape."

Fayetteville State is the second-oldest public institution in North Carolina. A member of the University of North Carolina System, FSU has nearly 6,000 students and offers degrees in more than 60 undergraduate and graduate degree programs.





Ralphael Bernard



Garden City JC (Raleigh)

Daseion Cole



Contra Costa JC

Brenton Flowers



Richmond Sr HS NC

Maleek Gorham



D.H. Conley HS NC

Justin Hooks



SE Guilford HS NC

Jertaves Jenkins



South Central HS NC

Brian Jones



Santa Rosa JC

Raquan Jones



E. Guilford HS NC

Stanley Jenkins



TC Roberson HS NC

Fred McDuffie



SE Raleigh HS NC

Avery Redding



Pine Forest HS NC

Marquise Williams



Scotland Cty HS NC

James York



College of the Deserts



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