When Tulane running backs coach Jamaal Fobbs learned that the Green Wave would be opening the 2017 football season Sept. 2 against Grambling State, he couldn’t help but think to himself, “Here we go again.”
For the fifth time since he was a running back for the Oklahoma State Cowboys, Fobbs will be competing against family—this time his brother Broderick Fobbs, the Tigers head coach, and his father, Lee Fobbs, the running backs coach and a one-time Tulane assistant.
“It’s just another game,” Jamaal Fobbs said. “It just so happens that my brother and father will be on the other side. We’re going to do everything in our power to win the game, and after it’s over there will be a lot of love, a lot of hugs and a lot of ‘Good luck the rest of the year.’ ”
Fobbs has grown accustomed to the mostly friendly rivalry. He twice went up against his dad, a former defensive line coach at Baylor, while in college. And he twice coached against his brother—an assistant coach at McNeese State when he was receivers coach at Southeast Louisiana.
If there’s one person he sympathizes with, it’s his mother, Sheila, who does her best not to take sides.
“For her it’s exciting,” he said. “But it’s also bittersweet because one sibling will win and another will lose.”