Jenkins signs with Fayetteville St.

Published 6:54 pm Friday, July 27, 2012

WINDSOR – It’s part of the heritage and the legacy.

William Jenkins played football for Gates County High School back in the late eighties, and never got the chance to advance beyond the prep level.

His son, also named Williams Jenkins, played for Bertie High School from 2008-2011, and last week the six-foot-two inch, 295-pound defensive lineman got a chance his father never had.

After a stellar Falcon career, the younger Jenkins will be continuing his football – and his education – at Fayetteville State University after signing a letter-of-intent in the BHS Media Center.

He hopes to major in accounting.

A four-year letterman and two-year team captain, Jenkins closed out his high school career with a senior season where he made 63 tackles – eight for loss – three sacks, and had one fumble return for a touchdown.

Two times he was All-Area as voted by the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald as well as an All-league selection and Best Defensive Lineman his final year in the Northeastern Coastal Conference.

“Their coaches were outstanding and their facilities were outstanding,” said the shy teen about choosing FSU.  “They have a good staff and a good environment and I’m looking forward to it.”

Jenkins cited as inspiration his cousin, former Bertie star Travis Bond, who will be playing his senior season in 2012 for North Carolina in Chapel Hill.

He also paid tribute to his grandmother, Alice Jenkins, back in Gates County (“She made the best biscuits”), his aunt, Odessa Bond (“She was like a second Mom to me and helped raise me.”), and the late Bertie football coach, Tierce “Bull” Ruffin (“I’ll always bleed Bertie Blue”).

Another former Roanoke-Chowan area player, Andre Lyles of Hertford County High, recently wrapped up his career with the Broncos making the All-CIAA (Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association) team.

“Those guys set the pace,” said Jenkins. “Now I hope to make my own path.  Maybe I can provide for more area players to come here in the future.

“There are a lot of good players in the CIAA,” he added.

Jenkins’ dad, William, Jr., said he wanted to make sure his son got a chance to play more football beyond high school.

“I told him to ‘bring the heat’ and never quit,” said the elder Jenkins. “When I played I always liked to play to the crowd and get them in the game. You try to set an example from beginning to end.”

“I really respect those ‘old-school players’,” said his son.  “They set the tone and taught you how to be physical.”

The Colerain native says he hopes he can make it to the next level after college and play in the NFL.  But more importantly, he wants to get his degree and he hopes one day to work in finance.

Jenkins would also like to get his playing weight up to 305 pounds, and to play for FSU as a true freshman. That might mean seeing him on the field when the Broncos come to Murfreesboro on September 29 to play Chowan.

“I hope I can make the trip,” he said with a smile about getting a chance to play in Garrison Stadium before his local fans and supporters.  “I’d like for folks to come and see me play.”