SCOOBA – A five-game home slate, including an MACJC state championship game rematch with Jones County Junior College during Homecoming weekend, highlights reigning NJCAA National Champion East Mississippi Community College’s 2014 football schedule.
Guided by seventh-year head football coach Buddy Stephens, the EMCC Lions will begin defense of their second NJCAA National Championship in three years with an Aug. 28 road outing against Southwest Mississippi Community College in Summit. While retaining MACJC South Division member SMCC on its gridiron slate, EMCC swaps out non-division foes East Central and Pearl River with Jones County and Copiah-Lincoln for the 2014 campaign.
Back on East Mississippi’s MACJC regular-season football schedule for the first time since 2009, both Co-Lin and JCJC return to the Scooba campus after recent playoff meetings with the Lions. Set to host Copiah-Lincoln on Thursday, Sept. 4, the Lions will be looking to avenge their 47-46 home loss to the eventual MACJC state champions from two years ago. That 2012 semifinal-round setback to the Wolfpack in Scooba currently stands as EMCC’s most recent football defeat.
With five MACJC North Division regular-season titles in Stephens’ six seasons at the EMCC football helm, the Lions will conclude the month of September with the opening portion of their six-game divisional ledger. Following their division opener at Coahoma, Sept. 11 in Clarksdale, the reigning three-time MACJC North Division champions will welcome Northeast Mississippi to Sullivan-Windham Field on Sept. 18 before traveling to Fulton a week later (Sept. 25) to take on Itawamba.
Perhaps the marquee matchup on EMCC’s regular-season football slate will feature a rematch of last year’s MACJC state championship game when the Lions claimed a 61-24 home triumph over the visiting Bobcats to earn their third state gridiron title in five years. The Oct. 4 showdown will mark the Lions’ lone scheduled Saturday contest of the regular season in addition to highlighting East Mississippi’s Homecoming weekend festivities on the Scooba campus. The EMCC-JCJC rematch is set for a 2 p.m. kickoff at Sullivan-Windham Field.
Set to enter the 2014 football campaign having prevailed in 32 of their last 34 outings, including undefeated (12-0) seasons in 2011 and again a year ago, the EMCC Lions will close out their regular-season schedule with home division outings against Holmes (Oct. 9) and Mississippi Delta (Oct. 23) sandwiched around an Oct. 16 road contest versus Northwest Mississippi in Senatobia.
The 2014 Mississippi Association of Community and Junior Colleges (MACJC) state football playoffs will be contested during the first two Saturdays of November. After the state semifinals on Nov. 1, the 2014 MACJC state championship football game will be held the following Saturday (Nov. 8) at a site to be determined.
With two national championships (2013 & 2011), three state titles (2013, 2011 & 2009) and five division crowns (2013, 2012, 2011, 2009 & 2008) dating back to the 2008 football season, the East Mississippi Lions have compiled a six-year overall record of 56-10 for an .848 winning percentage under Stephens’ guidance. EMCC is also 33-3 collectively in regular-season division play during that same span for a .917 winning percentage.
Entering the upcoming football campaign tied for fourth nationally among the NJCAA’s winningest football programs over the past six seasons (since 2008), East Mississippi is tabbed as the nation’s No. 1 junior college football team in this year’s JCGridiron.com Preseason Dirty 30 Rankings. In another preseason rankings list that comprises all 138 of the nation’s two-year schools that presently field football programs, including the 68 NJCAA member affiliates and 70 California schools, EMCC has also earned a No. 2 preseason national ranking by the Sporting News 2014 College Football Preview magazine.
2014 EAST MISSISSIPPI COMMUNITY COLLEGE FOOTBALL SCHEDULE
Date Opponent Time Site
Thurs., Aug. 28 at Southwest Mississippi 7:00 p.m. Summit
Thurs., Sept. 4 COPIAH-LINCOLN 7:00 p.m. SCOOBA
Thurs., Sept. 11 at Coahoma* 7:00 p.m. Clarksdale
Thurs., Sept. 18 NORTHEAST MISSISSIPPI* 7:00 p.m. SCOOBA
Thurs., Sept. 25 at Itawamba* 7:00 p.m. Fulton
Sat., Oct. 4 JONES COUNTY (HC) 2:00 p.m. SCOOBA
Thurs., Oct. 9 HOLMES* 7:00 p.m. SCOOBA
Thurs., Oct. 16 at Northwest Mississippi* 6:30 p.m. Senatobia
Thurs., Oct. 23 MISSISSIPPI DELTA* 7:00 p.m. SCOOBA
*-MACJC North Division games