McNeese State Presents Offer To Newton’s Tanner Holmes
There's a new college football prospect in Newton.
McNeese State reached out to junior Eagles linebacker Tanner Holmes on Wednesday with a college football scholarship offer. Holmes announced the news via his Twitter account.
Holmes (6-3, 220) averaged more than 10 tackles per game in Newton's 16-game season. He finished the year with 187 tackles and helped guide the Eagles to a Class 3A Division II state championship appearance against Waskom.
McNeese State, an FCS school located in Lake Charles, La., offers the linebacker an opportunity to play relatively close to home and against teams that have strong followings in the region. The Cowboys square off against the likes of Stephen F. Austin, Lamar and Sam Houston State in Southland Conference play.
It's also the future home of Holmes' teammate Calum Foster, an all-around athlete for the Eagles last season.
The program spent most of 2014 ranked and nearly upset Nebraska on the road in its season opener, a 31-24 loss. A rough final three-game stretch against Stephen F. Austin, Southeastern Louisiana and Lamar ultimately knocked McNeese State out of the FCS rankings.
Matt Viator, a three-time Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year finalist and two time conference coach of the year winner, is entering his 10th season as the head of the Cowboys program and has guided the team to four FCS playoff appearances. He has been with the program since 1999.
Prior to coaching in the college ranks, Viator was a very successful Louisiana high school football coach. He won Louisiana coach of the year awards in 1992 and 1998.
Holmes is a giant obstacle on the high school level, and he has been forged through competition against teams mostly depending on the run. He stood out in the state championship game with several hard hits, and his 4.64 40-yard dash time makes him a difficult opponent to shake off in open space.
The linebacker will be leaned on as a senior. Newton will graduate Roney Elam, a Texas A&M defensive back signee, as well as Foster in May.
Holmes will become eligible to sign with any program that offers him on Feb. 3, 2016, along with all college football prospects graduating in 2016.