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WSSU to close out its season on Saturday at Southern Division champion Fayetteville State
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WSSU to close out its season on Saturday at Southern Division champion Fayetteville State

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Eleven Winston-Salem State seniors will play in their final college football game at Fayetteville State on Saturday afternoon.

Tight end El-Joshua Allen and defensive back Josh Flowers came back to play this season though they had earned degrees. Allen will play in his last college game, then head to N.C. Central’s law school.

“This will be the end of my football career and it’s something I’ve been doing for a long time so I definitely want to go out with a win,” Allen said. “This season didn’t go as planned, but there’s a lot to play for against Fayetteville State.”

Flowers, who was projected to make All-CIAA this season, has been invited to two bowl games, including the HBCU Legacy Bowl in February in New Orleans, where he and fellow senior Ta’Shaun Taylor will play. The NFL and the Black College Hall of Fame are putting on the game, and expenses will be paid for Flowers and Taylor to play and try to capture the attention of NFL scouts.

Rams will play at Fayetteville State

“I want to try and play at the next level and that’s what I’m focusing on after this game on Saturday,” Flowers said. “I can’t say enough about what Winston-Salem State has done for me and it’s been great. We want to take the mindset that if we can win we can be co-champions in the Southern Division.”

The Rams have a chance to finish 4-1 in the division, and the Broncos would also be 4-1. However, the Broncos have already clinched the spot in the CIAA championship game based on the conference record. The Broncos will play Bowie State on Nov. 13 in Salem, Va. in the CIAA championship game.

Robert Massey, the Rams’ interim head coach, could be in his final game. The school opened the application process this season, and Massey said he had heard that more than 150 have applied.

“I have a job to do and that’s coach these guys up for this final game, and our plan is to go down there and play our best,” said Massey, the interim coach since April 2019 and whose teams are 7-12 in two seasons.

After losing their first four, the Rams won three in a row but fell apart last week in the second half in a loss to Shaw. The Rams led 14-10 at halftime but failed to score in the second half of a 38-14 loss.

The Rams will face a good Broncos team that is 7-1 overall and has won six in a row. The Broncos’ only loss was at Wingate (40-21) on Sept. 11.

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El-Joshua Allen will be one of 11 seniors playing the final college game on Saturday for Winston-Salem State.

The Broncos and Coach Richard Hayes, a former defensive coordinator at WSSU and a Dudley High School graduate, have won the Southern Division the last four seasons but have yet to win the CIAA title.

It’s doubtful that Hayes will rest his starters in preparation for the CIAA championship game because the Broncos are also in contention for the Division II playoffs.

“I’m sure we’ll get their best players on the field,” Massey said.

Flowers didn’t want to talk much about Massey’s job status, and instead focused on what a victory would mean for the returning players.

“We’re going into the game with the mindset to win and that will get the guys in a good frame of mind for spring ball,” Flowers said. “A win would definitely be something that could help down the line. We just have to make sure we get off to a good start.”

336-727-4081

@johndellWSJ

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