May step into a starting role at the defensive tackle position in 2017 … Had a superb 2016 season despite playing in a reserve role … Should go a long way in helping the Aggies replace All-MEAC defensive lineman Marquis Ragland … Had his freshman season cut short after two games … Good run stopper with the ability to come off the ball and make plays … Has good speed for his position, and he has an impressive 101-inch reach…Can bench press 225 pounds 22 times in one set … His bench press max has improved to 360 pounds and he has a squat max of 500 pounds.
2016 Season: Played 12 games without a start … Made 23 tackles (nine unassisted), 8 ½ tackles for loss and three sacks … Also broke up a pass during the season … Made three unassisted tackles in a 31-9 win over Hampton in a nationally-televised game on ESPNU on Sept. 29 … Made seven tackles (one unassisted) in the Aggies FCS playoff game at Richmond on Nov. 26.
2015 Season: Played two games without a start … Had season cut short because of injury … Was the Aggies second-leading tackler in a win over Shaw on Sept. 5.
High School: Played varsity football under Eric Reid … Played 26 games varsity games and made 148 tackles with 94 of those tackles unassisted … Also recovered three fumbles and had two sacks in his career.
Personal: Full name is Justin Jermaine Cates … He is the son of B. Cates and Gene Sanford … Has two siblings, Erica and Toya … He was born on December 26, 1997 … His major is mass communications.