An Ole Miss recruiting cycle hamstrung by an endless NCAA investigation came to a relatively positive close on Wednesday. With National Signing Day winding down, the Rebels’ 2017 class currently ranks No. 30th in the nation by 247Sports’ calculations (that number may fluctuate a bit as lingering decisions trickle in across the country).
While that ranks 12th among the 14 SEC schools (in front of only Mizzou and Vandy), it’s nevertheless better than it could have been considering the NCAA investigation still has no end in sight. The Rebels began the day ranked No. 52.
This class actually ranks 17 spots higher than Freeze’s first class in 2012, a group that included Channing Ward, Issac Gross, Trae Elston and Bo Wallace. And while the 2017 bunch lacks star power (D.D. Bowie, Breon Dixon and likely sign-and-place Chester Graves are the lone four-stars among 23 current signees), it should provide depth at positions of need, particularly linebacker. The Rebels inked four ‘backers aside from Dixon, which should help fill the gaping void on the depth chart.
The re-commitment of Bowie, the highest rated player in the class, was arguably the biggest win of the day, of only for morale. Expected to flip to Mississippi State, the longtime Rebel pledge held firm during a live ceremony. He’s ranked the No. 20 wideout in the country, though he’s previously expressed a desire to switch to defensive back in Oxford.