• 70°

College football: North grad Jefferies finds news home

By Mike London
mike.london@salisburypost.com

CLINTON, Miss. — You can’t teach 6-foot-5, 302 pounds, and it’s not like Wesley Jefferies can’t move around pretty well for someone his size.

The burly lineman from North Rowan is currently making his fourth stop since graduating from high school at Division II Mississippi College.

Mississippi College is in Clinton. Jackson is about 15 miles away.

“This is my last go at it,”  Jefferies said. “It feels right.”

Mississippi College players are working out now. The Choctaws are optimistic about playing a five-game schedule in the spring.

“I would have the option of returning to school at Mississippi for another season, but the plan is to do well enough this spring that it gets me where I want to go,” said Jefferies, who will turn 24 in December.

His role models are NFL players from Rowan County — North Rowan’s Javon Hargrave (Philadelphia Eagles) and West Rowan’s Chris Smith (Las Vegas Raiders).

Jefferies blossomed into an outstanding interior defensive lineman as a junior and senior for North Rowan’s Cavaliers, racking up 51 tackles for loss in two seasons and making the All-Rowan County teams in 2013 and 2014. Playing in the 2A ranks, North was 24-4 in those two years and was ranked No. 1 in the state most of 2013.

Jefferies also was nimble enough to contribute to the school’s basketball program.

“I’ve always been light on my feet for my size,” Jefferies said.

Out of high school, Jefferies headed to California with North teammates Alexis Archie to play for Feather River Community College.

He had 22 tackles, including 3.5 for loss as a freshman. He suffered a concussion as a sophomore and his production declined to 12 tackles, two for loss.

“The whole junior college experience was humbling,” Jefferies said. “But I know I’m a better person for it. I did a little bit of growing up in California.  It helped me mature being out on my own like that.”

Jefferies made a verbal commitment to Hampton University, but after a coaching change at Hampton, he started exploring other options.

Division I North Dakota signed Jefferies with the idea of converting him to the offensive line. He practiced on the offensive side of the ball, but he did not get on the field in what became a redshirt year with the Fighting Hawks.

His next stop was D-II Minnesota Crookston.

Jefferies moved back to defense in Minnesota, which was a positive for him. He was credited with making 14 tackles for an 0-11 team.

Then Minnesota Crookston announced shortly after the 2019 season that it was ending its struggling football program.

“I was able to get back to playing defense at Crookston, and that’s the side of ball where I’m best,” Jefferies said. “But then they discontinued the program and I had to try to find another opportunity.”

That led to his latest adventure at Mississippi College, where Jefferies is determined to make his last shot his best shot.

He signed with the Choctaws in July and is majoring in criminal justice.

It’s hot in Mississippi, but Jefferies is embracing the challenge of getting in the finest shape of his life.

“There have been a lot of trials and a lot of tribulations in my life,” Jefferies said. “But I’ve kept the faith through it all. I believe it all happened for a reason.”

 

 

 

 

 

Comments

BREAKING NEWS

October closure hearings set for Faith, Enochville elementary schools

Crime

Police say man gave false name after high speed chase, crashing into lumber truck

Coronavirus

Nearly 400 cases considered currently active in the county

Education

Rowan-Cabarrus Community College creates free course to help parents tackle virtual learning

Business

New unemployment claims down in August, could indicate positive trend for businesses

Crime

Salisbury man faces drug possession charges after overdose call

Crime

Police: Man charged after children call 911 from neighbor’s house

Ask Us

Ask Us: Who are people behind sign at City Park playground?

Coronavirus

Prison in Salisbury latest site of COVID-19 outbreak

Crime

Blotter: Salisbury Man charged with felony assault by strangulation

Nation/World

Trump vows quick Supreme Court vote, Biden urges delay for Nov. 3

Nation/World

New rule may strip pollution protections from popular lakes

East Spencer

East Spencer draws crowd for annual community day

Elections

In Rowan’s legislative races, Howard, Warren get off to strongest start in fundraising

Business

From Navy SEAL to Medicare agent, Trent Waller looks to continue serving his community

Elections

In 13th Congressional District race, Budd, Huffman differ on government’s role in COVID-19 help

Local

Rowan County Telecommunications joins new state digital 911 system

Education

School board will consider scheduling public hearings for Faith, Enochville closures

Business

Biz Roundup: Food Lion makes donation to support racial equality and justice

Elections

Republicans rally supporters at Saturday lunch

Elections

Budd holds wide lead over Huffman in fundraising, cash on hand

Crime

UPDATED: 1 shot, 5 in custody after shooting at haunted house that attracted 1,000 visitors

Nation/World

Trump picks conservative Amy Coney Barrett to fill Supreme Court seat

Coronavirus

Deadly September propels Rowan County to 100 deaths from COVID-19