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Monarch Football Update: Junior Class Breakdown

Courtesy: ODU Athletics
         
Release: May 29, 2013
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May 29, 2013

NORFOLK, Va. - With the spring semester over, the 2013 regular-season opener at East Carolina is just 94 days away. With that in mind, ODUSports.com breaks down the returning players on the roster. Last week we took a look at the seniors, this week we look at the junior class.

Jakwail Bailey - WR - Haddonfield, N.J./Paul VI
Bailey had a solid off-season and spring practice after establishing himself as a starter in 2012. He played in all 13 games and started the final six games of the year.

He caught 29 passes for 284 yards and a touchdown, and recorded career highs with nine catches for 89 yards in ODU's 64-61 victory over New Hampshire. He also had eight grabs for 79 yards in the win at Towson. With the graduation of leading receiver Nick Mayers, Bailey will look to play an even bigger role in the ODU passing attack this season.

Dominique Guinn-Bailey - DL - Portsmouth, Churchland
Guinn-Bailey burst onto the scene in 2012, earning playing time at defensive tackle, starting six games and finishing fifth on the team in tackles. Guinn-Bailey's emergence at tackle allowed the Monarchs to move Erik Saylor to defensive end, and Guinn-Bailey flourished in the process.

He finished the season with 52 tackles, 7.0 tackles for loss and 2.5 sacks en route to earning all-conference accolades. In 2013, Guinn-Bailey will look to pick up where he left off and improve from last season's performance.

Taylor Heinicke - QB - Atlanta, Ga./Collins Hill
Heinicke put together one of the best, if not the best, seasons ever by a quarterback at the FCS level. The winner of the 2012 Walter Payton Award for the Best Player in the FCS, Heinicke broke several records and led the country in every meaningful quarterback category. In ODU's come-from-behind 64-61 win over New Hampshire, he set NCAA Division I records with 730 passing yards and 791 total yards and also set records for passing yards and total yards in a quarter and a half, as well as the record for most passes attempted in a game (79) without an interception.

He finished the year 398-of-579 for 5,076 yards and 44 TD passes, leading the country in all of those categories. He also rushed for 470 yards and 11 touchdowns to lead the nation in total touchdowns.

A native of Atlanta, Ga., Heinicke had another outstanding off-season conditioning program and spring practice. The ODU offense lost just one wide receiver from last season, giving Heinicke familiar targets for the 2013 season.

Mike Justice - OL - Springfield, Va./West Springfield
Appeared in six games last season on special teams and at tackle. He will look to crack the lineup in 2013 and is currently listed as the backup to Jack Lowney at left tackle.

Tyree Lee - RB - Hampton, Va./Phoebus
Lee rushed for 128 yards and a touchdown in ODU's win over Delaware on national TV and never looked back, starting the final five games of the year, record three-straight 100-yard rushing games and a career-high 166 yards in the regular-season finale over William and Mary.

He led the team with 864 yards on the ground and finished second on the squad with eight touchdowns. He also caught 35 passes out of the backfield for 343 yards and a touchdown.

Eriq Lewis - CB - Washington, D.C./Coolidge
Lewis started six games and played in 11 in 2012, finishing the year with 25 tackles, 2.5 tackles for loss and an interception.

He earned all-conference honors in 2011 as a redshirt freshman, recording 41 tackles and a team-high five interceptions, and will once again fight for playing time at corner back.

Rick Lovato - LS - Middletown, N.J./Middletown
Lovato had an unnoticeable 2012 season, which for a long snapper, is a good thing.

The second year long snapper handled duties for extra points and field goals and punts without any problems and earned All-America honors. He will head into his third season as the Monarchs' long snapper in the fall.

Josh Mann - OL - Virginia Beach, Va./Ocean Lakes
Mann started all 13 games at center for the Monarchs in 2012. All five starters on the 2012 offensive line started every game, and the group helped the Monarchs lead the nation in scoring offense, total offense and passing offense.

An intelligent player, Mann made all the line calls up front and will look for a repeat performance in 2013.

Reggie Owens - CB - Virginia Beach, Va./Ocean Lakes
Owens appeared in all 13 games last season and started six, including the FCS quarterfinals game against Georgia Southern. He had 34 tackles, two sacks, both against Villanova, and an interception against Coastal Carolina in the FCS playoffs second round.

The Virginia Beach native had a solid spring and is positioned as the starting corner back leading into fall camp.

Larry Pinkard - WR - Washington, D.C./Ballou
Pinkard was one of four wide receivers to catch 55 or more passes in 2012. The Washington, D.C. native caught 55 passes for 830 yards and seven touchdowns. He had two of his best games in the FCS playoffs, catching six passes for 154 yards and three touchdowns against Coastal Carolina and grabbed a career-best seven passes for 83 yards versus Georgia Southern.

He had one of the best off-seasons of any of the Monarchs and produced an impressive spring practice as well. He had a team-best 37.5 in the vertical jump and finished just a tenth of a second off of Antonio Vaughan's team-high shuttle, posting a 3.98. Pinkard, who has started two-straight games at wide receiver, is once again listed as a starter. He was named to the College Football Performance Award preseason wide receivers list.

Blair Roberts - WR - Rochester, N.Y./Bishop Kearney
Another product of ODU's receiving talent, Roberts caught 56 passes for 707 yards and seven TD's in 2012. A solid route runner with consistent hands, Roberts recorded career-highs with eight catches for 104 yards in the opener against Duquesne and recorded six receptions in games against New Hampshire, Delaware and James Madison.

The tallest returning receiver at 6-2, Roberts started 11 games in 2012 and will start again in 2013.

Preston Smith - DL - Chesapeake, Va./Deep Creek
Smith played in all 13 games last season, starting 11 of them at defensive end. He finished seventh on the squad with 50 tackles and also contributed 4.0 tackles for loss and three sacks.

He underwent a number change and a position change in the spring, changing from 48 to 92, and he moved down to defensive tackle from his end spot. He is currently listed as the starter at defensive tackle.

Antonio Vaughan - WR - Ahoskie, N.C./Hertford County
Vaughan is the leading returning receiver of an impressive group that saw four players catch 55 or more passes, three of them are returning. He recorded 60 receptions for 885 yards and seven touchdowns and earned all-conference honors.

He recorded a career-best 12 catches for 143 yards in the win over New Hampshire and eclipsed the yardage mark with 146 yards on six grabs versus Georgia Southern. He registered four 100-yard receiving games, also notching 100-yards against Villanova (103) and James Madison (123).

Vaughan had an excellent off-season conditioning program, posting a team-best shuttle run of 3.97 seconds and was just two tenths off of Jevon Neal's team-best 40-yard dash, delivering a time of 4.41.

Stay tuned to ODUSports.com for an update on the sophomores.

To take a look at the senior class breakdown Click Here

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