n Flying Lions: North Alabama will have an unusual gameday trip Saturday when the Lions play at Texas A&M-Kingsville.
The Lions will fly to the game, leaving Muscle Shoals Regional Airport at 8:30 a.m., and arriving in Corpus Christi around 10:45 a.m. Kickoff in Kingsville, Texas is at 7 p.m.
UNA will fly back after the game, but the team does have 20 hotel rooms reserved to allow the players a place to rest after the flight.
“If everything goes perfectly smooth I’m not concerned, but obviously I can’t predict that,” coach Bobby Wallace said. “The players will have plenty of time to rest at the hotel, so we should be fine.
“It will make for a long day, but if we went on Friday we would be sitting around the hotel all day Saturday. We bused to Birmingham and we will bus to West Alabama, which is three hours, so I don’t think there is much difference.”
Wallace said his biggest worry is not bad weather or mechanical problems with the plane.
“Our biggest thing is getting all the kids on the plane because some of them have never flown before,” he said. “We probably have 10 to 15 guys that have never been on a plane, so that will make it interesting.”
n Wilcox moves: Sophomore Cedric Wilcox was moved from running back to linebacker this week. Wilcox played mainly fullback for the Lions and had three carries for 14 yards this season.
“We’re just so loaded at running back right now,” Wallace said. “Cedric is a guy that can run and is a hitter. It’s more of a move for next year than this year. He’s a terrific player on special teams and he has the talent to be a good linebacker.”
n Big-play Simmons: Freshman running back Diamond Simmons has not had many opportunities to showcase his running ability, but he has certainly made the most of his few carries.
Simmons broke an 80-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter of last week’s 41-0 victory over Shorter. Two weeks earlier the former Hanceville star had a 76-yard scoring run against Kentucky Christian.
The 80-yard touchdown run is the ninth-longest in UNA history, while the 76-yarder was the 13th-longest. Simmons now has 202 yards rushing on nine carries, an average of 22.4 yards per carry.