SAN MARCOS — Nico Ezidore will play in his 56th and final game for Texas State as one of 19 seniors honored in Saturday’s season finale against Louisiana.
Ezidore, a 6-foot-2, 285-pound defenseman from Garland, is one of seven Bobcats to be in the Texas State program in the past five years, along with wide receiver Javen Banks, cornerback Jarron Morris and tight end Jackson Lanam, linebacker Jake Lynch, offensive linemen Kylar Cooks and offensive lineman Jaydan Smith. And cornerback Kordell Rodgers, linebacker London Harris, defenseman Gjemar Daniels and receiver Chandler Speights have all been at San Marcos for the past six seasons.
“Since I’ve been here, I’ve changed personally in that I think about more positive things than in the past,” said Ezidore. “I was in a dark place at times while I was here, early in the years that I was here. … Just think more positively about everything in life. Even if your situation is not what you want, you can make the best of everything.”
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Ezidore, who will be making his 40th career start, has amassed 192 tackles, 28 tackles for loss and 8½ sacks. He has three sacks and 34 tackles with 8½ tackles to one loss this season while playing with the statistically best defense he has ever been in.
This season, Texas State, as an FBS program, has all-time bests in five statistical categories: total defense (354.3 ypg), rushing defense (111.7 ypg), scoring defense (25 ppg), tackles for loss (71 overall), and Yards Allowed per Game (5.2). Texas State has also produced 26 sacks, the second-most behind 2014’s 28 sacks, and is the second-highest-grossing player with 19 (the Bobcats had 26 in 2012 and 19 in 2014).
“What went right this year was that everyone was locked in and wanted to make plays,” said Ezidore. “Everyone on our team has the ambition to get the ball. We just got together and played together and we played pretty well. I’m pretty happy with how we’ve changed this program. Of course we changed the standard. I’m glad that over the past few years that I’ve been here, I’ve been able to help bring about this change in standards with everyone.”
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Ezidore is 4-0 in the four games he has played against Louisiana but has one last chance to beat the Ragin’ Cajuns on Saturday. And he wants to make the best of it. Louisiana is just one win away from bowl eligibility at 5-6.
“I want to go out with a bang on my graduation night,” said Ezidore. “I’m trying to come out with a win and not let (Louisiana) go to a bowl either. I’m looking forward to that at this point. … It’s always good to spoil someone’s situation, so I’m looking forward to that and coming onto the pitch this Saturday with whatever I can.”
Basketball: The men’s and women’s teams split their last two games, with the men (3-2) suffering a fresh win and the women (3-1) their first loss.
The men lost 61-56 en route to UTSA last Thursday before bouncing back with a 59-55 win over Cal this Monday. The women won their third straight game last Tuesday with a 101-32 win over Arlington Baptist before falling 72-68 en route to UTEP last Saturday.
The men’s team will travel from California to Hawaii to compete in the Patty Mills North Shore Classic, beginning with a game against Southern Utah on Friday. The women’s team played at Texas A&M on Wednesday.