AUBURN, Alabama — Paul James III missed most of Auburn’s spring practices due to a foot injury.
The junior college transfer was expected to step in and provide immediate help on the opposite side of Carl Lawson on the defensive line, but the Tigers didn’t get a good look at him in 15 practices. In fact, his absence made room for true freshman Marlon Davidson to jump to the forefront as a potential star.
James III, however, is expected to contribute immediately for the Tigers and succeed as one of the top edge rushers on the team.
“You can see he’s a big, strong, powerful guy that has a knack for rushing the passer,” said defensive coordinator Kevin Steele, “but that having been said, he’s still got a lot of snaps to get to work we need to get in.”
In other words, the summer and preseason camp will be big for James’ future. Fans will also have to wait to see if he lives up to expectations.
“He looks good,” Lawson said April 5.
James III recorded 14 sacks at Copiah-Lincoln Community College in 2015, providing him a four-star ranking and consideration as the nation’s best JUCO weak-side defensive end.
Auburn recorded only 19 total sacks last season, the second-worst mark in the SEC.