Exit Interview With Louisville WR Ja’Quay Savage

Photo: Jeff Nunn

Ja’Quay Williams was a highly touted 4 star recruit from Georgia who ranked as the nation’s No. 90 recruit in the 2012 class. He spent a year at Fork Union Military Academy in Virginia and remained a four-star prospect. In 2013 he signed with the Texas A&M Aggies where he earned playing time as a freshman.

After that season, he decided to transfer to Louisville. When I heard about his transfer I immediately became a fan of his. He sat out the 2014 season due to NCAA transfer rules. Prior to the 2015 season, Ja’Quay Williams decided to legally change his name to Ja’Quay Savage, taking the last name of his mother. When Felecia Savage was visiting her son, he presented her with a legal document showing her that they now share the same name. Felecia said she was honored and speechless about that unexpected actions of her son, as she cried tears of joy.

The 6-foot-3, 214-pound Savage, played the 2015 season at Louisville where he started six games and played in nine, catching 12 passes for 135 yards and one touchdown. He was injured for most of  the 2016 season and didn’t have a reception.

Ja’Quay is one of those guys who was never in trouble, always worked hard and led by example. Ja’Quay earned his degree and will be eligible to play right away. He is the only receiver (according to my research) who has caught a touchdown from 2 different Heisman trophy winners. I am and will always be a fan of his. I am thankful that he took the time to do an interview with me. He is our interview……..

Photo: Courier-Journal

CSZ: First and foremost I want to say thank you for all your hard work, dedication and leadership during your time here at Louisville. We appreciate you and are very grateful you chose to spend the last few years here.

JS: “Thank you, I really appreciate it. Louisville was great and I wish the city and the University the best. I’m glad I came here – it really molded me into the man I am today.”

CSZ: I’m quite sure I speak for all Cardinal fans when I say that we wish you well wherever you end up playing next year. Speaking of next year, do you have a school in mind or at least narrowed it down to 2 or 3? Any chance you go play with Kyle in Piscataway?

JS: “ I haven’t narrowed it down too specific schools right now in order to keep my options open. I don’t want to treat this process like the recruiting out of high school; I have looked into all my options have done research on every school that’s interested to make a decision that’s best for me. I talk to Kyle regularly and he definitely wants me to come play with him but he also has my best interest at heart and wants me to commit to a program that’s good for me.”

CSZ: I understand that you graduated. Congrats on that accomplishment. That means you are eligible to play this upcoming season. Is your plan to try to play this year or will you sit and play the following season?

JS: “Yes I want to play right away and I will be eligible to play anywhere but a couple of schools that were blocked including the ACC Conference. So anywhere I go I’m looking to earn my time and play as soon as possible.”

CSZ: I know your career at Louisville didn’t go exactly how you planned but most of that was due to injury. Are you fully healthy now?

JS: “I had a couple of injuries that held me back when I definitely needed to be out on the field and it was tough overcoming situations I couldn’t control, so I just focused on getting better and staying healthy. I’m 100% recovered now and working out at full speed”

CSZ: There may be others but you are the only player that I am aware of that has caught a touchdown pass from 2 different Heisman Trophy winners. How does that feel and what does that mean to you?

JS: “To catch a touchdown pass from two Heisman Trophy winners and two of the best college football players is awesome, especially since I’m the only one I know of that has done it. Playing with both Johnny and Lamar was the highlight of a lifetime, because of their skill and their accomplishments as athletes.”

CSZ: Who was better, Johnny or Lamar?

JS: “I get that question all the time haha. Johnny and Lamar are more similar than everyone thinks. Not only being a runner and a passer but they both hate to lose and will do anything to get that W. Johnny had multiple 1st rounder’s and even a first pick in the draft on his offensive line that made his job a little easier but still had to make something out of nothing at times which he was great at. Lamar having to make something out of nothing happens more often; I always wonder what Lamar would do behind that offensive line Johnny had. They both are my favorite two college football players and it’s very hard to say who is better. They are great at different things and their styles of playing are different but when you put everything together, you can’t say ones better than the other, it balances out.”

CSZ: Who are your closest friends on the team?

JS: “Our team at Louisville was so close that there weren’t any specific friend groups because everyone hung out with each other. Everyone is very close on the team and everybody got along. I love them and I will miss the bond a lot.”

CSZ: Of all those guys, who is most likely to be seen eating White Castle’s at 2:00 a.m.?

JS: “Hahaha I can’t really think off the top of the head who I think would be eating White Castle but if I had to guess it would be Charles Stansberry or Jordan Davis hahaha.”

CSZ: Where is your favorite place to eat on campus?

JS: “My favorite place to eat on campus is probably China Inn.”

CSZ: What do you order there?

JS: “I get the same thing every time at China Inn and that’s the Shrimp with lobster sauce and fried rice, it’s my favorite meal on campus.”

CSZ: In your opinion, is a hot dog a sandwich?

JS: “I do not think a hotdog is a sandwich because a hot dog has only one piece of bread hahaha.”

CSZ: You’ve been in quite a few places over the past 5 years. What makes the city of Louisville a special place?

JS: “Louisville is definitely different from any other city I’ve been too. It seems like everyone in Louisville is proud of the city they live in and although there’s not much to do, Louisville seems to have its own culture and I’m definitely not going to forget the memories I’ve made here ”

CSZ: When you are not playing or practicing football, what do you like to do ?

JS: “Anytime I’m free I like to relax and take my girlfriend out. I like going to the movies and go places just to get me out of the house.

CSZ: In your opinion, who on the current Louisville roster is going to have a breakout season in 2017?

JS: “I’m looking for a bunch of receivers to have a breakout season; they’re all a great group of guys with a lot of talent, and I think Lamar is going to win the Heisman again.”

CSZ: Again, thank you for your time at Louisville and thank you for taking the time to talk with me. Before we go, I want to give you a chance to say anything you want to all Cardinal fans out there….

JS: “I appreciate all the support I’ve gotten from my time here at UofL. The fans are unlike any other fans and they truly love the University and the game of football. I wish things would’ve gone differently for me here but I plan on continuing my success and hope whatever program I join I receive the same love and support I have received by the fans at the University of Louisville. I will never forget my experience as a cardinal.”

Jaquay Savage
Photo: scacchoops.com

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