Troy’s Anthony Williams has ties to the ACC

Published 7:23 pm Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Anthony Williams moves around campus a lot quicker these days.

Williams, a Troy defensive end, spent the first three years of his career at ACC power Georgia Teach. Each day in practice, Williams, and the rest of the defensive players, would try to man up against Paul Johnson’s triple option offense.

The transfer to Troy has allowed Williams to ease up on the ice packs.

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“ All that cutting,” Williams said with a smile. “My knees are very happy. I’ll say that . No doubt about that. It felt good playing against a regular offense going back to what I was playing in high school.”

In high school, Williams was rated as the 25th best prospect in the state of Georgia by Rivals, and was named to the Georgia 5A First Team.

He inked with Tech in 2010, and graduated with a degree in management in 2014. Williams redshirted in 2010, so following graduation he still had one year of eligibility left.

When he was beginning his search for a new place to play football, his phone rang. It was Troy coach defensive line coach Randy Butler.

“ I started talking with Coach Butler and just knowing the history of the defensive line here at Troy,” Williams said. ”Demarcus Ware is one of my favorite NFL defensive ends/defensive players. It was a good push for me.”

At Georgia Tech, Williams played in 28 games and recorded 17 tackles, one sack and a forced fumble during his time in gold and white.

After making the decision to become a Trojan, Williams put the skyscrapers and the hustle and bustle of Atlanta in his rearview mirror and traded it in for the oak and magnolia trees of Troy.

“It’s pretty much a slow process, coming from the city and coming down to a small town, college town like Troy,” Williams said. “I’ve got used to it. I’m trying to make the best out of it.”

Williams has seen Duke before, and has helped Jamal Stadom, Troy’s starting defensive end, as much as possible.

The duo has worked well together, with Williams taking on the role of mentor.

“It puts a bigger leadership role on me,” Williams said. “Being an older player and having more experience, you tend to see the type of mistakes he will make just because he is a young (guy). I understand going in practice against the scout team is much slower than the college stage that we play.”

With just one season of eligibility left, Williams hopes to put it to good use.

Being my last year, I just want to give it all I’ve got. I come down here to a good program like Troy, I (want to) get better each and every day. I feel very comfortable here.”

Troy hosts Duke Saturday at 6 p.m. at Veterans Memorial Stadium.