“It’s tough,” the Grambling coach was saying on this morning’s Southwestern Athletic Conference teleconference, “losing two guys of that caliber. They are probably two of the better players in this conference.”
The quarterback Dillon — MVP of both the 2009 Bayou Classic and SWAC Championship Game — was denied a final year of eligibility by the NCAA on the eve of the 2010 season, while defender Anthony has missed time after suffering chest pains in preseason practice.
That’s meant pushing forward a new freshman passer in Anthony Carrothers (No. 7 in the 10-teams SWAC with 131 yards per game and 48 percent completion rate, but second to last in total passing touchdowns with just two) and a noticeable drop in game-changing big plays on defense. After finishing second overall in 2010 with a plus-11 turnover margin, the Anthony-less Grambling defense has slipped to ninth in the league with a minus-3 margin.
“We could use (Anthony’s) presence rushing passer and in making those big plays,” Broadway said. “Both of those guys are impact players. We have had to change the way we play. But the thing that does is give someone else an opportunity to play.
“I know this: We miss both of those kids, because it would have made us a better football team.”
Anthony was the defensive MVP last year against Southern in the Bayou Classic, the nationally broadcast rivalry game between Louisiana’s SWAC programs.