December 17, 2003
Albany-- There's a reason the Albany State Rams finished at the top of the SIAC in total offense this season. You see, they're on the Atkins diet, the Antonio Atkins diet. "Yeah...ha ha ha," White laughed.
Only this Atkins diet has nothing to do with abstaining from carbohydrates, but rather a steady helping of number 24 running the football. "They just hand it off to me and I just do what I do, run the ball," Atkins said.
True freshman Antonio Atkins has been a pleasant suprise to say the least for head coach Mike White and the Albany State Rams this season. The Jessup native has rushed for 1,051 yards and 12 touchdowns entering Saturday's Pioneer Bowl with Fayetteville State.
"I call him Marshall Faulk because he's got vision, he's got speed, he's got it all. He's just a great back," junior quarterback Uyl Joyner said.
"We didn't quite see that in camp. We saw him run and hustle and everything but when we saw him in the Valdosta State game we said, oh wow look at that, wow look at him again'. He's been doing it all year long," White added.
What's even more suprising is the fact that Atkins is a walk-on. "Yeah it just makes you want it more, makes you fight harder," Atkins said.
Coach White however says a scholarship is on it's way and as for Atkins, he knew all along he had the ability to be a difference maker.
"Oh I knew I could play ball somewhere in the United States, I could play ball somewhere. I knew I could play, I just had to get the shot," Atkins added.
And the Rams are sure happy they were the ones to give it to him.