HATTIESBURG, Miss. (WDAM) - Three University of Southern Mississippi football veterans have “opted out” and will not play for the Golden Eagles this season.
USM coach Jay Hopson said Monday afternoon that senior defensive lineman Jacques Turner, senior linebacker Racheem Boothe and junior receiver Jaylond Adams had decided not to play in 2020.
“These days, with everything going on, that’s what they’ve done, opted out,” Hopson said. “I don’t know how else to say it.”
Hopson said he did not know whether the trio intended to transfer.
“You’d have to ask them,” Hopson said.
Turner said the “uncertainty” surrounding COVID-19 and the college football season weighed heavily on his decision.
Boothe remains on the comeback trail after surgery late last year to repair a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee.
Both apparently are on track to graduate in December because both indicated they intend to enter the transfer portal as graduate transfers on Twitter.
Adams’ plans were unknown.
All three were major contributors for the Golden Eagles.
In three seasons, the 6-foot-1, 247-pound Turner accumulated 100 tackles, including 31 1/2 tackles for loss and 14 sacks
The 6-0, 210-pound Boothe, an one-time Freshman All-American and member of Conference USA’s All-Freshman team, had 177 career tackles, including 22 tackles for loss.
A preseason All-C-USA selection in 2019, Booth missed four games because of injury.
The 5-10, 180-pound Adams was named second-team All-America as a return man after scoring three times on returns in 2019. He returned kickoffs for touchdowns against Alcorn State University and Troy University and also returned a punt for a score against Alcorn.
He ranked third on the team in 2019 with 48 catches for 483 and two touchdowns despite missing last four games with an injury. Had career-high 11 catches for 180 yards against Troy, and his 322 all-purpose yards against the Trojans stand second in school history.