After leading team LunarBeast to Nike's The Opening 7on7 Tournament title and taking home the MVP trophy from the Elite 11 finals, Shea Patterson is making headlines again. This time, the Ole Miss commit is announcing that he is leaving Calvary Baptist Academy in Shreveport, La. to play at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla.
The news was broken Monday afternoon by Shreveport television sports anchor Tim Fletcher on Twitter. Fletcher mentioned that Calvary Baptist head coach John Bachman has dealt with this kind of situation before with former Shreveport native John David Booty as he left high school a year early.
Shortly after Fletcher broke the news, the blue-chipper himself confirmed the news using the ever-so-popular iPhone Notes app to thank his teachers, coaches and classmates in Louisiana and to announce that he will be an IMG Ascender.
For those of you that aren't familiar with IMG, it is a
fertile crootin land for Patty Ice to do work in private athletic training institute for youth, high school, collegiate and professional athletes. After being founded in 1978 as a tennis academy, the sports and entertainment company IMG purchased it in 1987 and has since turned it into a college athletics factory. And despite only having a football program for two years, they've amassed a record of 19-3 and have had 25 seniors sign to play college football.
Now, what does this mean for Ole Miss? Welp, for a team that is already friggin' loaded with talent, it can't hurt at all for crootin purposes. Now, that doesn't mean that Shea is going to start flipping croots left and right...or does it?! IMG currently has five five-stars and five four-stars on their roster for the 2016 class. Shea had a great opportunity to win a third consecutive state title at Calvary Baptist this season, but at IMG, he will be surrounded by college-level talent at every position and will be able to travel and play against the very best all over.
What it DOES mean for Ole Miss is a massive opportunity for Shea Patterson to be the face of arguably one of the most talented high school football teams in the country with the name "Ole Miss" associated with said talented team. Any chance that Hugh Freeze can have Shea Patterson on ESPNU playing against the likes of five-star defensive tackle Rashan Gary at Paramus Catholic or going toe-to-toe against Tennessee quarterback commit and fellow Elite 11 alum Jarrett Guarantano of Bergen Catholic is paramount for the foundation Ole Miss is building for their future crootin.
This fall, the Ascenders' schedule includes trips to American Heritage (Florida), DeSoto (Texas), St. Joseph Regional (New Jersey), Paramus Catholic (New Jersey) and Southern Lab (Louisiana). This will also be an incredible opportunity to prove the doubters wrong and play against elite competition week in and week out to try and secure the No. 1 overall player in the country ranking and to prove to undecided croots that he's the man and they should join him in Oxford next year.