Former Titan battles for QB 1 position at Lenoir-Rhyne

Jalen Ferguson is battling for the starting quarterback position at Lenoir-Rhyne University.

Former Titan battles for QB 1 position at Lenoir-Rhyne
March 17
09:13 2022

Jalen Ferguson is the type of player that gives his all on the field. His skill, passion, and knowledge of the game has him poised to be the starting quarterback for the Lenoir-Rhyne University football team.

Ferguson is a 2020 graduate of West Forsyth and chose the Bears over other colleges that were recruiting him because of the proximity to Winston-Salem, the stellar academics the school provided, and the opportunity to play the quarterback position earlier because of the senior quarterback on the roster.

Ferguson has worked hard to put himself in place to compete for the starting quarterback position. He learned a lot while being on the bench; now he is eager to show what he can do under center.

“I continued getting bigger and improving my strength, but also my mechanics have improved tremendously,” said Ferguson. “I have been stressing my mechanics and my throwing motion and just trying to use my lower body in my throws to perfect my craft.”

The Bears are in the middle of spring practice and Ferguson feels he has performed very well thus far.  

“It’s going pretty good and I think I am doing pretty well,” Ferguson said about spring practice. “I have been showing up to practices and making good plays. I just have to continue to do that and stay consistent with my reps and everything. I feel like everything will go the way it should for me.”

To be named the starter would mean a lot to Ferguson. Putting in the hours in the film room, weight room, and practice field will all be worth it if he wins the job, said Ferguson.

“It would mean a lot because I have been waiting for this,” he said. “When I got to college I had to sit and that’s not something that I was used to, so that was a big change. I am ready to turn it up when I get this starting job and show them what I can do for this school and this city.”

The Lenoir-Rhyne coaching staff has done a great job of correcting Ferguson’s throwing motion and he credits them for helping him progress at the position.

“The coaches played a big part, especially my quarterback coach,” Ferguson stated. “It’s crazy that this is my third quarterback coach that I’ve had at LR (Lenoir-Rhyne).”

With the transfer portal available to players, Ferguson said the thought did cross his mind when the starter ahead of him decided to return, but quickly put that thought out of his mind. He didn’t discuss the thoughts with anyone as he dealt with those thoughts within himself.

“I had those small thoughts, but I am not that type of person just to leave and I knew just to wait and stick it out and I knew my time was coming soon,” he said about exploring the transfer portal.

Playing at the 4A level helped Ferguson make the transition to college football. He said the speed of the game is faster, but playing against elite competition in high school was a benefit.

“It was pretty much what I thought it was going to be, it’s just basically just continuing to find confidence within yourself,” he said about the transition from high school to college. “Especially this year with me getting reps with the ones and twos, I am having fun with it and just taking things how they come.”

Ferguson entered college during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic in fall of 2020. His freshman year was thrown off because he was basically quarantined in his room and was not allowed to attend most of his classes in person. One silver lining to that was Ferguson was able to build great friendships with other members of his recruiting class on the team.

Waiting an extra year to compete for the starting job was something Ferguson took as a blessing. He used that time to work on his skills, become a better leader, and get stronger.

“I had to wait an extra year, but also I got some time to continue to develop my game and continue to learn from the quarterback who saw a lot of success here,” he said about being a backup. 

Ferguson learned a lot from his father, Lawrence, growing up playing the game. Mr. Ferguson played collegiately at North Carolina Central University and is currently an assistant coach on the West Forsyth varsity team coaching staff.

“With him always in my ear, it made things a lot easier,” Ferguson said about his father. “I was calm and didn’t stress a lot on game day knowing I have a good person in my ear to keep me going.”

Mr. Ferguson is excited for this opportunity for his son. When it came to selecting a college for Jalen, Mr. Ferguson left the choice up to his son because Jalen was the one who had to live with the decision.

“At the end of the day, it was the next four or five years of his life and the only advice I gave him was to just pick a school that if football didn’t work out, you would still want to go to school there and be a student,” said Mr. Ferguson. “I just wanted him to be happy with his choice.”

Mr. Ferguson has also noticed the growth his son has made on the field and the work he has put in to become a better quarterback.

“One thing I have seen is that he has gotten bigger and stronger,” said Mr. Ferguson. “He never really committed full time to football because he played basketball too. He was sort of leaning to that, but he kind of decided that around his junior year that he wanted to full all in to football and he just put in the work required to be that.

“He always played quarterback since he was younger with the Greyhounds and the Tiny Indians of the Pop Warner organizations.  He’s always been a leader, so the main thing that I have seen was the arm strength and getting bigger at Lenoir-Rhyne because he has always had the height.”

To see his son line up as the starting quarterback for the Bears would mean a great deal for Mr. Ferguson. He says seeing his kids live out their sports dreams are what it’s all about and will be a proud moment for him. 

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Timothy Ramsey

Timothy Ramsey

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