Jackson hopes another beginning at Northwestern is enduring

September 14, 1993|By Ma'ani R. Martin | Ma'ani R. Martin,Contributing Writer

New season. New coach. Simply put, it's a new beginning.

Northwestern's football program has been following this trend for the last six years. Coaches have come and made attempts to build a solid program and contender at Northwestern, but failed in their efforts.

The last time Northwestern had a winning season was in 1989, when it went 6-3 under coach Lynn Badham.

But spirits are high at Northwestern these days, despite losses in the first two games to Cambridge-South Dorchester and Forest Park by a combined score of 66-6.

The Wildcats believe they have a coach who can turn things around again in former Southern of Baltimore assistant Wayne Jackson.

"Change for the better is definitely here and the turnaround from losses to wins won't happen in one year. However, with the nurturing of young talent, it will take two to three years before you'll really see all your work and efforts come around," Jackson said.

"It's a challenge and it's a lot of work involved, but I enjoy it and I'll step right up to the challenge."

The Wildcats have gone through many changes in recent years. The program hit hard times in the final year of longtime coach Jim Ward, compiling a 1-9 record in 1984 after a 5-4-1 mark in 1983. From 1985 to 1987 under Jesse Edwards, Northwestern had a 1-26 record. Sidney Carter took over for a year in 1988 and the team went 0-7-2. From 1989 to 1991, things got better under Badham as the Wildcats compiled a 14-11 mark, including 6-3 in 1989.

But last year, the program's progress came to a screeching halt under first-year coach Paul Shuford as the Wildcats went 0-10. All totaled, since Ward left to become an assistant at Howard University, the Wildcats have a record of 15-54-2.

Jackson hopes to turn the negatives that have plagued Northwestern into positives, and with his winning background and attitude, he may succeed.

Jackson was a three-sport standout at Edmondson in the late 1960s, excelling in football, lacrosse and basketball. In football, he was a star halfback, setting a record of most unassisted tackles in a game and winning All-Metro second-team honors. He

helped Edmondson win an MSA A Division title under coach Augie Waibel.

Waibel, who is now at Poly, sounded more like a proud father when he heard the news of Jackson's promotion.

"I am extremely proud," Waibel said. "Wayne is one of two guys to come out of my program to land coaching positions at the prep level -- Obie Barnes at Forest Park and now Wayne at Northwestern."

After graduating from Edmondson, Jackson went to Morgan State University, where he won a football scholarship and also played on the lacrosse team. In football, he helped the Golden Bears win the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference championship in 1968. In 1971, he helped the lacrosse team to the NCAA playoffs. Jackson won honorable-mention All-American honors three years in a row and participated in the North/South All-Star Game at Princeton.

"Wayne has been a part of winning programs and he will bring that attitude to Northwestern. He knows what it takes to motivate kids to be winners," Waibel said.

"He is a teacher on and off the field and that is the key to success in football. Football is nothing but a laboratory and kids want to know how it's done, and because Wayne possesses those skills to teach, it will make him a great coach."

As a coach, Jackson wants to motivate and instill a new philosophy in his players and to make sure they grow individually and come together as a team. Once that is implemented, he says the wins will come.

"The more we get to work daily on different aspects of the game and teaching the players different techniques and skills, you'll gradually see change in different areas, and once those changes start to grow, then you'll see a basic change in the whole team," Jackson said.

Senior captain Albert Jarrett was on last year's 0-10 team and the two teams that finished at .500 the two previous seasons. He has confidence that Jackson can turn things around.

"I feel if we put our minds together we can go all the way and I feel Coach Jackson can make us champions," Jarrett said.

WITHOUT WARD

Northwestern's record under four coaches since Jim Ward left after the 1984 season.

;1Year .. .. .. .. .. .. Coach .. .. .. .. Record

1985 .. .. .. .. .. .. Jesse Edwards .. .. 0-9

1986 .. .. .. .. .. .. Jesse Edwards .. .. 0-9

1987 .. .. .. .. .. .. Jesse Edwards .. .. 1-8

1988 .. .. .. .. .. .. Sidney Carter.. .. 0-7-2

1989 .. .. .. .. .. .. Lynn Badham .. .. ..6-3

1990 .. .. .. .. .. .. Lynn Badham .. .. .. 4-4

1991 .. .. .. .. .. .. Lynn Badham .. .. .. 4-4

1992 .. .. .. .. .. .. Paul Shuford.. .. ..0-10

Totals 15-54-2

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