April 12, 2012
BEAUMONT - Lamar University football coach Ray Woodard conducted the draft for next week's Crawfish Bowl with center Kyle Gillam being chosen as the top overall pick for the second year in a row.
The red-white scrimmage, which is known as the Crawfish Bowl and will wrap up spring practice, will be held at 7 p.m. Tuesday (April 17) in Provost Umphrey Stadium. The game is open to the public with free admission.
Lamar is coming off a 4-7 season in its second year of action since reinstating the football program for the 2010 season. The Cardinals competed as full members in the Southland Conference last year, finishing 2-5 in league play.
"We've had a great spring," said Woodard about the month-long practice session. "We got a lot accomplished and the Crawfish Bowl is a great way to end a very productive spring. This is good for the fans and it's good for the players to put them in more of a game situation than a normal scrimmage would."
Gillam, a 6-foot-1, 270-pound junior-to-be from Lumberton, has started 21 games through his first two seasons. He was the top pick last year as well, although his white team fell 21-17 to the red team in the first Crawfish Bowl.
"That just shows how important the center position is," Woodard said about the top pick in the draft. "We're very fortunate to have a guy coming back for his third season who has so much experience and it's a compliment to him that he has been picked first twice."
The two teams will be coached by graduate assistants Marcus Carver and Brett Ramsey with legendary high school coaches Dan Hooks (West Orange-Stark) and Charlie Woodard (Silsbee) serving as honorary coaches. Ramsey, who made Gillam the top pick for the white team, will have Hooks on his sideline, while Woodard (Ray Woodard's first cousin) will be on Carver's staff.
Following each selection, the other team automatically got a player at that same position. After Gillam went to the white team, senior Ryan Jones
was awarded to the red team. Carver then selected nose guard Adren Dorsey
with his first pick, giving John Prescott
to the white team at the same position.
"I thought both sides did a good job on pre-draft preparation," said Woodard. "They knew what they wanted to get done and it made the draft move very smoothly this year. Both teams emphasized the offensive and defensive fronts and it looks like it will be a very competitive game."
The first quarterback taken was junior college transfer Ryan Mossakowski by the white team in the seventh round. Redshirt sophomore Jeremy Johnson will quarterback the red squad and Caleb Berry will play with both teams as Lamar is carrying three quarterbacks on its spring roster.
It took even longer for the first running back to have his name called as DePauldrick Garrett went to the white team in the ninth round. Running back Mike Venson was then assigned to the red team which followed with running back Caleb Harmon in the very next round.
The first 12 rounds were selected live with the draft being streamed on LamarCardinals.com.
Lamar will open its 2012 football schedule on Sept. 1 with a road game at former conference rival Louisiana-Lafayette, now a member of the Sun Belt Conference. Woodard's Cardinals will face a second Football Bowl Subdivision school when they travel to Honolulu, Hawai'i, to play a Sept. 15 game against the University of Hawaii.
The Cardinals' home opener in 16,000-seat Provost Umphrey Stadium is set for Sept. 8 against Prairie View A&M University. Their Southland Conference opener will be in Beaumont against Southeastern Louisiana University on Sept. 29, and their 2012 Homecoming Game will be against McMurry University on Oct. 13.
For season ticket information, call the Lamar ticket office at (409) 880-1715.