Georgia running back D'Andre Swift (7) leaps over Austin Peay defensive back Kordell Jackson (13) and Austin Peay linebacker Elijah Shepard (18) during the first half of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Sept. 1, 2018, in Athens, Ga. (AP Photo/Mike Stewart)

Austin Peay Hires P.K. Yongue Alum As Head Football Coach

Austin Peay State University has promoted their associate head football coach Marquase Lovings to the new interim head football coach for the 2020 season. Former Austin Peay State University Head Coach Mark Hudspeth resigned abruptly on Friday.

Gainesville Grown

Lovings is a former P.K. Yongue student who grew up with Gainesville coaches influencing his career path. He attended P.K. Yongue from ’99 to 2002 where he developed an admiration towards his coaches.

“John Clifford was my head coach at PK Young and he’s a legend. I really appreciate him. Mark G was my basketball coach. I had some really good teachers and met some really good friends I’m still in touch with today,” said Lovings.

Furthermore, Lovings explained that his coaches were a great male influence on his as he was raised by a single mom. He grew an admiration for his coaches’ ability to shape and mold him into the man he is today which inspired him to pursue the same career.

After high school, Lovings applied to colleges that he believed to have football programs with a great coaching staff.

“One time I was at a bowling alley and I ran into Charlie Strong, he told me some guys to go see at Mississippi State in case I got accepted there. I went straight to Melvin Smith who was the CB coach there and he let me volunteer for a year. After hard work and all that good stuff, Coach Crew allowed me to become a quality control GA,” explained Lovings.

New Beginnings At Austin Peay

Only days after Mark Hudspeth resigned after one season for personal reasons, Lovings was struck with the news of his promotion. Lovings was a defensive line coach last season, where he helped Austin Peay to rank eighth nationally.

“It surprised the heck out of me. It all happened so suddenly. I was hitting a golf ball when I heard. So I had no clue, I’m kind of a head down, do your work kind of guy,” said Lovings.

The Austin Peay is scheduled to play a week 0 matchup against Central Arkansas. Although their calendar still has remained unchanged, consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic will continue to threaten the season. Lovings explained that they are just trying to stay the course as long as possible.

About Parker Welch

Parker Welch is a Senior at the University of Florida majoring in Sports Media at the College of Journalism & Communications.

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