Reid's good deeds give him taste from Sugar Bowl

Jan. 04, 2014 @ 10:03 PM

Your view of the Sugar Bowl wasn’t as sweet as the one N.C. Central senior Jordan Reid had.

And listen, I don’t care how wide your widescreen is, Reid was right there on the Alabama sideline when Crimson Tide quarterback A.J. McCarron lost the ball on that sack with less that a minute left in the game.

Reid was in the building when Oklahoma scored a touchdown on the recovery to put the game out of reach for a 45-31 Sooners upset in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans on Thursday.

“I’ve never heard ‘Boomer Sooner’ and ‘Roll Tide’ so much in my life,” Reid said, referencing Oklahoma’s fight song and Alabama’s chant. “It was an eye-opening experience.”

That’s the kind of view a young man is afforded when he earns a spot on the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team. Reid got the nod because of the Adopt-a-Brother program he co-founded that pairs kids with college athletes who serve as mentors, exposing the children to things like arts and crafts and sports.

AFCA is short for American Football Coaches Association.

Duke senior offensive guard Dave Harding made the Good Works Team, too. He did a service project in Ethiopia, where he and some of the other Blue Devils offensive linemen dug wells so folks in a remote village could have some water to drink.

Reid, Harding and N.C. State tight end Asa Watson joined 19 others on the Good Works Team during halftime at the Sugar Bowl to receive an ovation for their, well, good works.   

On New Year’s Day, the Good Works team showed up at a New Orleans elementary school to put on a football clinic for kids from the YMCA of Greater New Orleans. That clinic took place at Isidore Newman School, where NFL quarterbacks Peyton and Eli Manning — along with their big brother, Cooper — played in high school.

Former New Orleans Saints player and Good Works Team member Jon Stinchcomb also served alongside Reid and his peers.

Before the Sugar Bowl, Reid said he was able to meet some of the famous dudes from ESPN, including former Ohio State quarterback Kirk Herbstreit, former Notre Dame coach Lou Holtz and former Minnesota Vikings running back Robert Smith.

Reid has an eye on a career in journalism. He’s spent a good bit of time getting experience in NCCU’s sports-information office, but he said seeing the ESPN guys up close got his mind going about the broadcast side of reporting on sports.

In the very near future, Reid, 22, will remain in Durham to begin working on his master’s degree in athletics administration while serving as a graduate assistant for recently hired NCCU football coach Jerry Mack. Coaching is where Reid’s heart really is.

Reid was really in the moment during the Sugar Bowl. He said that final, unfortunate play that was McCarron’s last snap as a college quarterback reminded him of his not-so-hot performance during his final game as NCCU’s signal caller, a 28-0 loss to  archrival N.C. A&T on Nov. 23.

“It really hit home for me,” Reid said.

Reid, from High Point, said those big boys for Alabama and Oklahoma had more beef on their biceps and backsides than the guys who chased him around in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference, although some of the wide receivers and other players at the skill positions were comparable in size.

At any rate, Reid, a dual-threat quarterback for NCCU, is confident that he could have lined up under center during the Sugar Bowl and made some plays.

“I’m a fiery guy; I’m a competitor, so whoever I’ve got in front of me, I’ll be ready to play,” Reid said.

By the way, Nick Saban’s great head of hair ...

“Looks exactly the same,” Reid said. “He’s a lot shorter.”

Reach John McCann at jmccann@heraldsun.com or 919-419-6601.