Signing day is less than a month away and the class is running out of spots, but there are plenty of top rated prospects that are showing interest.
One thing that is different from this staff than the last staff is this new term of having a "committable offer." With Orgeron, nearly every player in the nation possessed an offer from Ole Miss, but this staff has been more selective and apparently delineates offers and committable offers. Even the pay sites seem to be confused on who the actual commits are right now.
Rivals, Scout, and Scout Inc, all list 24 commits, but the lists vary on who those 24 commits actually are. Rivals maintains that Stephen Houston is committed to the Rebels, while omitting the Scout commits of Markell Lee and Eric Smiley. While Scout is claiming that these two have committed, they are not listing Stephen Houston as a commit. The third recruiting site, Inside The Grove, agrees with Scout on Markell Lee, but has not confirmed the Eric Smiley commit yet, but has placed Stephen Houston on their commit list.
If you followed any of that (probably not*) it just goes to show how fluid the commit list will be from now until signing day.
As I said earlier, we have a pretty full class and are bringing in plenty of people on official visits over the remainder of January. This means you can expect some of our current to commits to drop Ole Miss or be dropped themselves. I think the best candidates for switching commits/being dropped are Gabriel Hunter, Aaron Schulte, Terrell Grant and Stephen Houston.
Here is the breakdown of the commits and prospects by position
Raymond Cotton - Cotton is a four star QB from Meade, Maryland that actually spent some time growing up in Kosciusko, MS. Cotton is a former Auburn commit and is a dual threat quarterback. What I like about Cotton is his ability to stand tall and deliver the ball in the pocket. While he is adept at running the ball his video shows that he does not panic and use his legs too early. I believe that this is a two horse race with Auburn and Ole Miss fighting for him.
A.J. Mccarron - We are not getting him.
Gabriel Hunter - I don't expect him to wind up at Ole Miss. Hunter is a phenomenal athlete who compiled 1,200 yard rushing in five games for Kingsbury, but he went against Ole Miss's wishes and returned from a knee injury this season which further messed up his knee. Given the HBs already committed to the Rebels, Hunter is not as desirable as he was at the time of his commitment. I expect him to sign with Oklahoma State.
Rodney Scott - The four star speedster from Florida appears to be the Rebels best RB commitment of the class. Scott shows great field vision and lightning quick speed. He has a fairly long highlight video on Youtube that you can watch here. I really like his lateral quickness and ability to turn the ball up field quickly. He will be a good balance to the power of Bolden and Davis with his shifty style of running.
Kendrick Hardy - Hardy is one of the top players in the state of Mississippi this season. I haven't seen him play before, but I'm worried that he has not had much interest outside of the three in-state programs. He is the Rebels if they want him.
Terrell Grant - Grant garnered a scholarship after posting the best 40 time at the Ole Miss camp this summer. Despite his speed, the staff may deem him expendable if they end up landing Pat Patterson or if the staff decides to take on Lamar Scruggs in addition to Patterson (yes, I am ignoring the Marlon Brown speculation for a reason).
Montez Phillips - I don't know what to think about Montez. He has switched allegiances a couple of times but appears to be sold on the Rebels now. The local product played quarterback at Lafayette but is going to get his shot in the SEC at wide receiver. Montez has the best quote so far through the recruiting process. "I might take a visit to Southern Miss, but basically like everyone else I'm just taking a visit to get out of school." At least he is honest.
Pat Patterson - Patterson is one of the top uncommitted prospects left on the Rebels board and in the nation. The four star is a physical receiver who can beat you with his speed or strength and is reportedly an Ole Miss lean. Alabama and Mississippi State are still on the radar, but most people believe that if Patterson does not commit to Alabama this weekend he will be signing with the Rebels in February.
Lamar Scruggs - Scruggs is another four star wide receiver that has the Rebels near the top of his list. For Scruggs, it has come down to Ole Miss and South Carolina. If Patterson commits I am not sure what the status of Scruggs recruitment will be. If Patterson goes to Alabama I'd expect Scruggs to sigh with the Rebs.
Marlon Brown - A late addition to the prospect board is Marlon Brown. Brown is the second best receiver in the nation on most sites and recently replaced his LSU visit with a trip to Oxford. While this is all well and good people probably should not get their hopes up about this player signing with the Rebels.
Thad McHaney - McHaney, who is being recruited by Kent Austin, is listed as a tight end, but he could see time on the other side of the ball lining up at defensive end. He boasts an impressive offer list as well.
Zaccheus Mason - Mason is better known in recruiting circles as a basketball standout having only played football for two years. But the 6'6" tight end is picking up interest on the gridiron. This will be a big pickup for the Rebels because it would allow them to move one of McHaney or Ferbia Allen to the defensive side of the ball to solidify the depth at the end positions.
Logan Clair - Clair is an early signee and will partake in spring practice this year. Clair can expect to be pushed early because the Rebels need him to add depth to their line.
Emmanuel McCray - McCray has been a longtime commit for the Rebels and has remained committed despite strong pushes from Mississippi State. He is my favorite of the offensive line signees, for no real reason though because I have no idea how to scout offensive linemen.
Michael Brown - Brown wins the award for tallest signee at 6'6" and given how much he weighs will probably end up at one of the guard positions.
Aaron Schulte - I've read on the various message boards I frequent that we are going to drop him.
Bobbie Massie - Massie is our number one recruit. Massie is also Georgia and Alabama's number one recruit. That should give you a decent idea of the uphill battle the Rebels have to land his signature on signing day. Massie is easily the biggest game change left on the board and would ease the concerns I have regarding our offensive line next season. Undoubtedly, he would start as a freshman at left tackle.
John Sullen - Sullen is a three star prospect out of Auburn who is just now getting some interest from major players. If Massie is a no go, Sullen will be our top priority.
Cameron Whigham - I don't know much about this guy, if anything really. He has offers from Ole Miss and Central Florida. Oh, yes. This is the player Yancy Porter described as a "rich man's Marcus Tillman with Greg Hardy speed and Marcus Tillman's strength." That's quite the statement, Yancy.
Mike Thomas - Thomas was a nice pick up for the Rebels out of the Tide stronghold of Mobile. Thomas has good size but may end up on the offensive line.
Markell Lee - They are signing and placing him.
Victor Gray - Gray has it down to Ole Miss and UCF, distance being the factor for UCF's involvement. He remains a high priority for the Rebels and could be the final DE added to this class if he commits soon enough.
Alex Williams - Williams is the brother of former Arkansas WR Boo Williams who played under Nutt. His brother is apparently pushing him towards Ole Miss, but the final decision will come down to Arkansas and the Rebels.
Eric Smiley - Smiley is the Rebels only commit, maybe, at defensive tackle. Smiley is large and has a ridiculous 40 time for a player his size. Even though the offer list may not reflect it, this is a great pick up for the Rebels and hopefully he is able to make it to campus.
Corey Gaines - Gaines is only listed as a two star, but was an Army All-American and has an impressive offer list. Reports have it down to Ole Miss and Arkansas and he visits the Rebels on the the 23rd.
DeMarcus Knight - Knight has been committed since April and apparently is still set on joining the Rebels. He projects as MLB and has a pretty good video.
Tim Simon - Simon played both RB and LB in high school and has been told by the coaches that he will be given a look at RB. However, given the players we already have committed at RB and the need for more depth at LB Simon will be playing defense for the Rebels.
Willie Ferrell - He is the cousin of our recruiting coordinator, Chris Vaughn, and it appears to be between Ole Miss and Tennessee.
Mike Marry - Marry's name has been thrown around for awhile now and it appears he'll decide between the Rebels and South Florida.
Joel Kight - He may be a little undersized for the position, but that hasn't stopped coaches from recruiting him. The Rebels appear to have his last visit so that may be good news. I am sure Nutt is using Olijabutu as a reference every time he talks to this kid.
D.T. Shackelford - He claims he is committed to Tennessee, but he is really wide open at this point. I really like the potential of Shackelford and would love for him to be part of this class.
Shane Gordon - Gordon's name resurfaced after the Cotton Bowl and he has now scheduled an official visit for the 23rd.
Demond Washington - Hooray, another JUCO All-American. Seriously though, he looks really impressive at corner and will be in the rotation in the fall. May get a look at RB and will probably take Mike Wallace's place returning kicks.
Charles Sawyer - I haven't seen any video on Sawyer, but I hear good things. I like his offer list and stats so I approve of this commit, because that matters and all.
Ryan Campbell - Like Sawyer, I really don't know much about Campbell. He has good size though, something we did not have at corner this season.
Ricardo Dixon - The Rebels really want the South Florida commit and for good reason. He has very good speed and is a physical corner. Right now, Dixon claims it is 50/50 between the Rebels and South Florida, he is having to decide between proximity to home and the chance to play in the SEC.
Marcus Berg - Maybe it is because of his grades, but I don't see why we are recruiting Berg. He holds offers from Memphis and Bethune Cookman. He looks like a physical corner, but I would prefer we did not take him.
Commits (we have enough to not recruit any next year)
Dele Junaid - Junaid is not highly rated by Scout or Rivals, but ESPN has him as one of our top commits. i watched him play in the state title game in Texas and was impressed with his abilities. He is a ballhawk. I could actually see him at LB in college.
Jamar Hornsby - Everyone knows he has a checkered past, but from a football standpoint the Rebels got a good player. He can play either safety position, Nix makes his safeties learn both positions anyways, and can fly to the ball.
Artice Kellam - Artice had a good end to his season after back injuries hindered him during the season. His teammate is also joining the Rebels.
Frank Crawford - Crawford was a hot commodity before a season ending knee injury, but the Rebels remained in contact and will probably get his signature on signing day.
Stephen Houston - Scout doesn't list him as a commit, but the word is that Houston was one of this staff's top athletes on the board. I watched the video they have of him on Rivals and couldn't really figure out why. He was a running back in high school and I don't have the slightest idea what the plans are for him at Ole Miss. I do not think he signs with Ole Miss.
Korvic Neat - Meet the next Dexter McCluster. Neat is lightning quick and very fast. He will probably take a redshirt year his first season and then fill the void left behind by McCluster.
Tyler Campbell - He can punt the ball far.
Andrew Ritter - He is white and from the Jackson area so the Spirit board loves him!!!!!! He can also kick the crap out of a football.
*Because of my writing
**JUCO can correct me on everything I got wrong.