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Ole Miss recruiting: Willie Gay said the Rebels are in his top 2

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Can Ole Miss get the U.S. Army All-American back in the boat?

Four-star LB Willie Gay Student Sports

The Willie Gay Saga has been long and winding. He decommitted from Ole Miss in October. Shortly thereafter, he named Michigan his leader. Then went to San Antonio to compete in the U.S. Army All American Bowl and now LSU is in the picture.

Scout’s Chad Simmons reports that after spending a week in Texas for the all-star game, the No. 7 outside linebacker has two favorites: LSU and Ole Miss. Which means after all the drama, the Rebels have a chance to sign the country’s No. 7 outside ‘backer after all.

Ole Miss has three linebacker commitments from three-stars Josh Clarke and Brenden Williams and four-star Under Armour All-American Breon Dixon, but they need all the help they can get at the position. And Gay is not only one of the nation’s best at his position, but he’s the No. 3 player in the state of Mississippi.

The 6’2, 223-pounder is hearing about LSU from current commit, four-star Patrick Queen. But, not to worry because he is also hearing plenty about Ole Miss from Dixon. Willie will more than likely be a National Signing Day decision but at this point, I don’t think anyone really knows. The craziest thing is that neither of those teams lead his 247Sports Crystal Ball (Mississippi State leads at 52 percent).

Can Ole Miss get a three-star WR to visit?

Ole Miss rounded out it’s coaching staff on Tuesday when it hired Cal’s receivers coach, Jacob Peeler. His first assignment might be to sway a former Southern Cal commit to Oxford.

Marlon Williams had been committed to the Trojans since January of 2016 but backed off that pledge this week. Ole Miss offered him back in May and still seem to be in contact since his Crystal Ball reads 100 percent to the Rebels. The 6’1, 185-pound receiver also holds a notable offer from LSU and will visit Baton Rouge January 20th before closing out his visits with a trip to Knoxville the weekend before National Signing Day.

So will Ole Miss be able to get the McGill-Toolen High School star in town for a midweek visit or will they get him to cancel on the Tigers or the Vols to come meet Peeler?

As a senior, Williams had 46 receptions for 990 yards and 22 total touchdowns.

Ole Miss will get the last visit before a 3-star LB makes his decision.

In an interview with AL.com, Thomas Johnston said he plans to visit Auburn this weekend and Ole Miss on Jan. 20 before he “likely” makes his decision on Jan. 25.

"I don't want to say a whole lot right now," the 6’2, 215-pounder said. "I just want to get these last two visits in and I think then I'll be ready to make my decision.”

Johnson is the country’s No. 24 outside linebacker prospect and took home the MVP from the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Game. The state of Alabama’s all-time leading tackler seems to have somewhat of a plan after he makes his visits.

“After I go to Ole Miss, I'll come home, talk with my family a lot, pray about it and see what the future holds."

A newly-offered running back will visit.

Nicholas Sims doesn’t even have a star ranking on the 247 Composite and as of a week ago had a lone offer from Kentucky Christian. But the 5’11, 200-pounder out of Mobile, Ala. has had a busy mailbox over the last week, receiving offers from both Alabama and Ole Miss. Sims, who ran for 1,066 yards and eight touchdowns for Murphy High, will visit Oxford on January 20th.

The Rebs are in the top six for a four-star safety.

U.S. Army All-American Devon Hunter announced on Twitter that he’ll be making his official announcement next Saturday, and that the Rebels are among a list of six that he’s considering.

Ole Miss made it onto that list late because of the hiring of Wesley McGriff, who had been recruiting Hunter at Auburn. But after initially telling Yancy Porter of Scout.com that he was interested in making a late visit to Oxford, Hunter wouldn’t commit to an official Ole Miss visit while speaking with Bleacher Report this week. Ole Miss is also the only one of his six finalists that Hunter hasn’t made an unofficial trip trip to, which means you shouldn’t be holding your breath during next weekend’s announcement.