Friday, April 15, 2011

Hollandale native forced to regroup after college closes its doors

GREENVILLE — Just over two months ago, Jamarius Lyons talked about his excitement of joining the Lambuth University football team.
“It puts me closer to my father (who lives in Memphis),” the Hollandale native and former Mississippi Delta Community College defensive back said in February.
On Thursday evening, Lyons’ excitement was replaced with a mix of anger, reflection and confusion.
Lambuth, who he signed with after spending two years at MDCC, told its students Thursday it will shut down June 30 due to financial strains — leaving students dazed and “confused,” said Lyons.
The school, which is located in Jackson, Tenn., has also been in a legal battle over accreditation.
“I never knew they were having problems with accreditation,” Lyons said by phone after hearing the news of the school’s pending closure. “The coach (Ron Dickerson) never brought that up to me (during the recruitment process).”
The football team, Lyons said, will meet with coaches today to discuss transfer options for players. Amongst those interested in Lyons before he signed with Lambuth were North Carolina at Pembroke and Henderson State.
Lyons said he hopes something something comes through despite it being late in recruiting season.
“The coaches that offered me at first probably think I let them down,” he said. “....Now I have to start all over, and prove to coaches that I can play.”
School officials are currently searching for a school to take over the campus, according to Jackson Sun newspaper. However, athletics will most likely not return to Lambuth. All of the school’s spring sports, excluding softball, will finish off their 2011 schedule.
Meanwhile, Lyons is back on the recruiting board for potential schools.
Said Lyons, “I just hope it all works out.”

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