Speed is Name of the Game for Rams Kick Returner

Kennith Thompson Takes Advantage of Starts in Senior Year to Make an Impact


Published: October 30, 2008

Football is a game in which one play can be the difference between a win and a loss, making players like Fordham’s Kennith Thompson so crucial to a team’s success. Thompson, FCRH ’09, a senior defensive back for the Rams, has established himself as an impact kick returner in recent weeks.

Thompson attended St. Thomas Aquinas High School in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., where he was a team captain. St. Thomas Aquinas High School has been a source of football talent for the Rams in the team’s history, producing several notable Fordham alumni, a proud tradition which Thompson appears to be following. Thompson played mostly on offense until his sophomore year in high school, at which point he started to focus his talents on defense. In his career at Fordham, Thompson made a noticeable impact, despite being a non-starter prior to this season. Last season, Thompson’s talents started to move to the forefront, as he collected his first collegiate interception and earned a starting position by the end of the year. Thompson began the 2008 season as the starting cornerback for the Rams, a position which requires big play ability.

“Kenny’s speed helps him in every aspect of the game, which is really what our defensive scheme is geared around, so he’s a perfect fit,” said Fordham linebacker Nick Magiera, FCRH ’10.

This season, Thompson has been given an opportunity to utilize that speed to showcase his talents as a kick returner, something he had not done regularly since high school. In a game of inches, field position can mean everything and Thompson has often been able to put Fordham in great position this year.

“I enjoy playing defense just as well as returning kickoffs,” said Thompson, of his dual responsibilities on the team. His 39-yard kickoff return against Yale on Oct. 18 put the Rams in position for a crucial scoring drive, leading to their first touchdown of the game.

As a senior cornerback, Thompson is relied upon not only to make big plays but more importantly, to be a veteran presence on the team.

“Kenny was not voted as one of our captains, but he still fits in the leader role by always doing the right thing. This has him leading by example, especially towards the younger players,” added Magiera.

Thompson, a psychology major, has relished his role in the team’s success in recent years, culminating in last season’s Patriot League title.

“My best memory playing football at Fordham was experiencing the change in the football program for the positive,” Thompson said.

Thompson is hoping to make the most out of his senior season with the Fordham Rams. Despite the Rams’ 3-4 record, Thompson sees reason for optimism and excitement.

“Our goal this year is to play the rest of our games, not regretting a second of it, and we’ll see where that takes us,” Thompson said.