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Tackling an Opportunity: Roundtree, Jr. and Burgess Score Full Scholarships to Division II Programs

Tackling an Opportunity: Roundtree, Jr. and Burgess Score Full Scholarships to Division II Programs

The 2017 Allan Hancock College football team opened eyes on the field on its way to a Pacific League championship, the Bulldogs first outright conference title since 1997. The Bulldogs are racking up impressive statistics in the offseason as well. Two more members of the 2017 football team, Lenny Roundtree, Jr. and Jalen Burgess, both cornerbacks, accepted full scholarships to Division II programs this week. Roundtree committed to Tusculum College in Tennesee, while Burgess is headed to North Carolina to play for Lenoir-Rhyne University.

"Both Lenny and Jalen are very competitive and dedicated student-athletes," said Kris Dutra, Hancock football's head coach. "I believe they will be key players for their new schools. We are very proud of them and look forward to watching them succeed at the next level and earn degrees."

The two commitments bring the total number of players from Hancock's 2017 Pacific League championship team who earned scholarships to four-year universities to 16. Twelve of the 16 signed with Division I or II football programs.

"The most important role coaches play at the community college level is to help our student-athletes succeed on the field and in the classroom. I am proud of our sophomore class who worked hard to achieve their goals and earn an opportunity to continue their academic and football careers at four-year universities. This is also a testament to the dedicated staff and counselors who helped to ensure their success."

Roundtree, Jr. anchored the Hancock secondary in 2017 and finished with 28 tackles, three interceptions and 11 pass breakups. He ended his Hancock career with seven interceptions and 19 pass breakups. Roundtree earned a 3.09 GPA at Hancock to garner a spot on the Southern California Football Association's 2017 Scholar-Athlete Team.

Tusculum College, a Division II program in Tennessee, competes in the South Atlantic Conference. The Pioneers went 5-5 last season under second-year Head Coach Jerry Odom. Tusculum last won a conference title in 2008 when the Pioneers also advanced to the second round of the NCAA Division II Playoffs. Nearly 30 former Pioneers have gone on to play professional football, including five in the NFL.

Burgess transferred to Hancock from Nassau Community College last fall. He recorded 13 total tackles, broke up four passes and returned an interception for a 31-yard touchdown for the Bulldogs in 2017.

Lenoir-Rhyne is coming off a 3-7 season under second-year Head Coach Mike Kellar. The Bears are looking to regain their form when they won four straight South Atlantic Conference titles from 2011-2014 and participated in the NCAA Division II Playoffs in 2012-2014. At least six former Lenoir-Rhyne athletes have played in the NFL.

The two Bulldogs will face off in a conference game on Saturday, September 29 when Lenoir-Rhyne hosts Tusculum in Moretz Stadium.