Noted / Sports

Former Panther Standout Jamaal Payton Savoring Chance to Shine

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Jamaal Payton during a recent practice for the NIU Huskies. | Photo by niuhuskies.com

Wednesday, August 31, 2016 || By Michael Romain || @maywoodnews

Former Proviso West standout Jamaal Payton is savoring the opportunity to prove himself this Saturday, when he’ll start at middle linebacker for the Northern Illinois University Huskies in their season opener against Wyoming, according to DeKalb’s Daily Chronicle.

Payton, a senior, had been a reserve for the last three seasons, playing behind a decorated veteran. Before his scheduled start on Saturday, Patyon, the Chronicle notes, had started three other times at NIU.

Now, this season is all about him.

“It feels great, man. A long time coming,” Payton, who graduated from West in 2013, told the Chronicle.

“It’s something I’ve been prepared for and something that I’ve been mentally preparing myself for throughout the years.”

Payton told the paper that the process of getting to starting linebacker was hard, but within the struggle was wrapped a life lesson.

“think it taught me a lot of things about my character and how to deal with myself and things that will prepare me for life,” he said.

To read the full Chronicle article on Payton, click here. And now, a local high school football briefing:

Provisos East and West lose home openers

The Proviso East football team lost its home opener against visiting Maine West 14-0 last Saturday. The Daily Herald reports that the visitors won the game on defense:

“I think we can do some great things with this team this year,” said Warriors defensive end Malik Siem. “We need to keep our focus. We won today because we did our job on defense. My job today was to fend off the offensive tackle and keep the running backs pinned inside.”

You can read recaps of that game here and here.

Last Friday, the Proviso West football team lost its home opener against Lincoln-Way West 30-8, in a game that Herald-News writer Tim Cronin described as sloppily played on the part of the visiting team. Read Cronin’s recap of that game here. VFP

For more local sports briefs, ‘Like’ VFP on Facebook

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