Before four-star receiver Van Jefferson committed late in the afternoon, this post was going to be decidedly negative in tone. For most of National Signing Day, Ole Miss watched blue chip prospects thought to be in their grasp pick up other hats. But the late addition of Jefferson -- who dragged out his decision in agonizing fashion -- gives what is a relatively strong class a much more positive feel.
No, this isn't the top-10 class that it could have been, but it's still a top-20 group. The Rebs landed a five-star in offensive guard Javon Patterson, who should provide long term support to an O-line that was flat out awful in the run game last season. Jefferson and fellow four-star pass catcher DaMarkus Lodge could eventually develop into one of the best receiving tandems in the country. Four-star Rasool Clemons could be a longterm starter at defensive end, four-star safety Armani Linton bolsters an already stacked secondary and four-star Eric Swinney is one of the country's top running backs.
Don't forget, this class also includes the four JUCO prospects that signed in December, including four-stars Chad "Swag" Kelly, D.J. Jones and Tony Bridges.
But given the number of big names that the Rebels missed out down the home stretch, you can't help but think about what this class might have been. Five-star defensive end CeCe Jefferson, who named Ole Miss as his leader a month ago, ended up in Gainseville. Five-star offensive tackle Drew Richmond, who was a Rebel commit as recently as Monday, flipped to Tennessee. Dan Mullen swooped in and grabbed four-star linebacker Leo Lewis, who had been pledged to Ole Miss for over four months before jumping ship last weekend.
We'll have plenty of in-depth coverage of the 2015 class in the coming days, but for now, here's the list of the 22 players that have signed.
- 4-star CB Tony Bridges (JUCO)
- 4-star DT D.J. Jones (JUCO)
- 4-star QB Chad Kelly (JUCO)
- 3-star LB Terry Caldwell (JUCO)