Jacksonville Sports Day

Arena: Jacksonville Signs Rookie DB, Kick Returner Desmond Fairell

JACKSONVILLE – The Jacksonville Sharks announced today the signing of defensive back & kick returner Desmond Fairell who signs for his rookie season of arena football.

Fairell (6’0, 190) completed a successful Division II college career at Carson-Newman University in Jefferson, TN. During his time with the Eagles he played in 44 games for Carson-Newman racking up 142 tackles, 13.5 for a loss, 29 pass breakups, 19 interceptions, four forced fumbles, two blocked kicks, and one sack.

On special teams he totaled 45 punt returns for 291 yards and one touchdown during his four seasons with the Eagles. Fairell played in every single game during his career at Carson-Newman. In 2019, he tied the record for most interceptions in a single season with seven and became third all-time for career interceptions with 19 total.

Fairell finished his college career with a mountain of accolades including Division II All-American First Team honors at defensive back, Associated Press All-American First Team, he was a All-SAC First Team, a Don Hansen Football Gazette All-Region First Team, and he earned multiple DII & SAC defensive player of week awards.

During his senior season Fairell helped the Eagles to the second round of the NCAA Playoffs in 2019 season with an overall record of 9-3 and undefeated home record of 6-0.

Fairell was a 2020 NFL Draft prospect during COVID-19 pandemic that derailed the NFL preseason and altered the 2020 NFL combined. Despite adversity Fairell impressed and was recognized by Draft Diamonds for athletic abilities in combine style workouts as well as his notable 4.53 40-yard dash time.

Fairell is a native of Miami, FL and played for Miami Senior High School where he was a star receiver who recorded 29 catches for 513 yards and five touchdowns his senior year. He received All-Dade County honors and received offers from multiple Division I schools including Florida International University, Appalachian State, and Northern Iowa before becoming a Division II All-American at Carson Newman University.

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