Taylor, Echols-Luper among 13 Alabama natives on Red Wolves roster
Auburn High alum Blaise Taylor (Photo: Arkansas State Athletics/Clayton Hotze)
Auburn Head Football Coach Gus Malzahn has put the close loss to Clemson on Saturday behind him, and will now focus on the next opponent, his former team, Arkansas State.
Interesting fact about the Red Wolves: 13 current players are from Alabama. Of those 13, 7 of those players were featured in the starting lineup of their season opening game against Toledo last Saturday, and three of them graduated from Auburn High School.
Three Alabama Red Wolves have ties to Auburn football. Junior Blaise Taylor graduated from Auburn High School, and is the son of former Auburn assistant, and current Arkansas State assistant, Trooper Taylor. In three seasons, Taylor has 33 total
tackles, 1 interception, 556 punt return yards, and 2 punt return touchdowns. The second is the son of another former assistant, Curtis Luper, that’s former Auburn High School quarterback, Cameron Echols-Luper. Echols-Luper played two seasons at TCU, primarily as a punt returner, before transferring to Arkansas State to play on the offensive side of the ball. The third Red Wolf with Auburn ties, is former Auburn commit and Alabama top recruit, Dee Liner. Liner was released from his scholarship from Alabama last season, and joined the Red Wolves. Liner recorded 2 tackles in his Arkansas State debut last Saturday. Liner, Echols-Luper, and Taylor started for Arkansas State in Saturday’s loss to Toledo.
Defensively, two Alabama natives have played a major role in the Wolves success. Senior Linebacker Xavier Woodson-Luster (Eufaula) enters Saturday’s game with 212 career total tackles, with four forced fumbles, and two interceptions. Hoover native
Chris Humes has contributed in a big way during his four years as a defensive back, recording 138 total tackles, 2 interceptions, and 2 fumble recoveries. Other defensive players include: Jamaris Hart (Florence), Brandon Byner (Bessemer), Griffin Riggs (Auburn), BJ Edmonds (Mobile), and Trent Ellis (Daphne)
One of Arkansas State’s top receivers hails from nearby Tallassee, Dijon Paschal. The junior has 65 receptions for 1,183 yards, and 7 touchdowns in his career. Ozark’s Colton Jackson is considered to be the Red Wolves most experienced lineman, with 40 career starts. Alex Novak (Fairhope) is looking to make plays on the offensive line in his first year following his transfer from Southwest Mississippi Community College.
Seven of the thirteen Alabama natives started on Saturday in a 31-10 loss to Toledo, and are expected to see quality playing time on Saturday against Auburn.
Dee Liner (Photo: Arkansas State athletics)
Cameron Echols-Luper (Photo: al.com)