STATESBORO, Ga. (WTOC) - The pre-game routine for the Georgia Southern Eagles prior to their game against the Aggies of New Mexico State was a little different than usual. It took on a somber, but touching mood.
The Georgia Southern Athletics Department, along with the school’s mental health professionals made Saturday’s homecoming game a suicide prevention awareness game to honor the life of freshman offensive lineman Jordan Wiggins, who took his own life on Monday.
Wiggins wore number 78, so in the 78 minute mark on the pre-game clock, the team and staff gathered into the end zone for a prayer and moment of silence. Fans were allowed in the stadium early to pay their respects.
The team wore purple and teal helmet sticker ribbons and purple mouth guards. The staff had “JW” buttons and ribbons and fans were given stickers. The cheerleaders sported purple and teal hair bows.
A moment of silence was also observed prior to the national anthem to recognize all those who have been affected by suicide.
It was another rainy affair for the Eagles football team, but they were able to notch a 41-7 win over the Aggies.
Wesley Kennedy III fumbled the ball on Southern’s first drive, which NMS was able to capitalize off of with a touchdown to take an early lead, but he made up for it more than once. The junior back picked up more than 200 yards and scored three touchdowns in the win.
The Eagles are now 4-3 on the season. Up next, a road trip to rival Appalachian State on Halloween for an 8:00 p.m. EST kickoff.