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Local Legends: Opelika’s Jaylen Stinson helps on defense, special teams for Duke
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PREP FOOTBALL | Local Legends

Local Legends: Opelika’s Jaylen Stinson helps on defense, special teams for Duke

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One day after his little brother came up clutch for Opelika, former Bulldog star Jaylen Stinson did his part for the Duke Blue Devils.

Stinson helped the Blue Devils on defense and on special teams against Georgia Tech by recording two tackles and returning three kicks for 61 yards, the longest return going for 28 yards. While the sophomore safety did his part to keep Duke competitive, the Blue Devils wound up on the wrong side of a 31-27 contest.

Through six games this season, Stinson has 18 tackles, one tackle for loss and two pass break-ups. He’s had 14 kick returns for 281 total yards.

The Opelika Bulldogs got the job done in dramatic fashion Friday with a 21-20 overtime victory over Lee-Montgomery.

Stinson got involved as a true freshman with the Blue Devils last fall and was given the Bill Keziah Award as the team’s top special teams player. He recovered a muffed punt for a touchdown last fall against Virginia Tech and accumulated 12 tackles along with 355 kick-return yards.

Stinson arrived at Duke after being a three-year letterman at Opelika. His senior season in 2019 was a sensational one, as he recorded 67 solo tackles with one sack and one interception and helped the Bulldogs reach the Class 6A state semifinals.

In his final three seasons at Opelika, Stinson had 221 tackles, four INTs, eight TDs, two forced fumbles and two blocked field goals.

Stinson’s efforts against the Yellow Jackets was part of a big weekend for his family. Stinson’s younger brother Jarell, an Ole Miss commit, recorded multiple tackles and delivered the game-clinching pass break-up in Opelika’s 21-20 overtime victory over Lee-Montgomery on Friday.

Here’s a roundup of the other former Friday night stars from the area who stood out this week at the collegiate level:

Auburn High

Avery Atkins, LSU — Atkins had three punts that averaged 53.3 yards and two touchbacks on two kickoffs in the Tigers’ 42-21 loss to Kentucky.

Brandon Crum, South Alabama — Crum started but did not record any statistics in the Jaguars’ 33-31 triple-overtime loss to Texas State.

Mohamoud Diabate, Florida — Diabate had seven tackles in the Gators’ 42-0 victory over Vanderbilt.

Garrett Morris, Penn — Morris had one tackle and two quarterback hurries in the Quakers’ 20-0 victory over Lehigh.

Griffin Speaks, Baylor — Speaks played but did not record any statistics in the Bears’ 45-20 victory over West Virginia.

Central-Phenix City

Markail Benton, Jacksonville State — Benton had five tackles and 1.5 tackles for loss in the Gamecocks’ 28-24 victory over Stephen F. Austin.

Xavier Billingsley, Alabama A&M — Billingsley had one tackle in the Bulldogs’ 61-15 loss to Jackson State.

Jaxton Carson, North Alabama — Carson had three carries for six yards and one reception for two yards in the Lions’ 38-34 loss to North Carolina A&T.

J’Lan Carson, Alabama State — Carson had three tackles and 0.5 sacks in the Hornets’ 35-15 victory over Arkansas-Pine Bluff.

Javion Cohen, Alabama — Cohen started at left guard in the Crimson Tide’s 41-38 loss to Texas A&M.

Mason Cook, Georgia State — Cook played on the offensive line in the Panthers’ 55-21 victory over UL-Monroe.

Karon Delince, ETSU — Delince had five tackles and 0.5 tackles for loss in the Buccaneers’ 48-21 victory over The Citadel.

Terrell Gordon, Georgia State — Gordon had one tackle in the Panthers’ 55-21 victory over UL-Monroe.

Marquez Henry, ETSU — Henry had two tackles in the Buccaneers’ 48-21 victory over The Citadel.

Tyler Moore, Kennesaw State — Moore had one tackle in the Owls’ 34-15 victory over Hampton.

Jahlil Ryles, MTSU — Ryles played on the offensive line in the Blue Raiders’ 41-13 loss to Liberty.

Dadeville

Shawn Jennings, South Alabama — Jennings tied for the team-high with nine tackles in the Jaguars’ 33-31 triple-overtime loss to Texas State.

Glenwood

Kelcy Allen, Kennesaw State — Allen had a fumble recovery in the Owls’ 34-15 victory over Hampton.

Navy Harris, Troy — Harris played but did not record any statistics in the Trojans’ 27-24 victory over Georgia Southern.

Kye Robichaux, Western Kentucky — Robichaux had six carries for 31 yards in the Hilltoppers’ 52-46 loss to UTSA.

Lanett

Ja’Won Howell, North Alabama — Howell played but did not record any statistics in the Lions’ 38-34 loss to North Carolina A&T.

Opelika

Jake Bentley, South Alabama — Bentley was 19-of-26 passing for 189 yards with two touchdowns and one interception and rushed three times for 13 yards in the Jaguars’ 33-31 triple-overtime loss to Texas State.

Charlie Benton, UAB — Benton had one tackle in the Blazers’ 31-14 victory over Florida Atlantic.

Will Boler III, UAB — Boler had four tackles and a fumble recovery in the Blazers’ 31-14 victory over Florida Atlantic.

Smiths Station

Deondrae Williams, Navy — Williams played but did not record any statistics in the Midshipmen’s 31-24 loss to SMU.

Tallassee

Tavarious “Truck” Griffin, Alcorn State — Griffin had one reception for 11 yards and a blocked punt in the Braves’ 24-20 victory over Grambling State.

Valley

Tyreic Martin, Alcorn State — Martin had two tackles and 0.5 tackles for loss in the Braves’ 24-20 victory over Grambling State.

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