Everyone knows about Nakobe Dean by now.
Five-star linebacker. Mississippi’s 6A Mr. Football. Under Armour All-American. 4.3 GPA student. And Ole Miss’ top target.
The Horn Lake product just recently wrapped up a 15-0 senior year and 6A state championship over Oak Grove. But, instead of celebrating upon returning home from Hattiesburg, the 6’0, 220-pounder traveled South to Oxford for a weekend visit.
Good Morning twitter do any of you know these Guys ❤ pic.twitter.com/n8Y5W9804d— mjjmom (@tmorris74) December 2, 2018
Rebel Grove’s Russell Johnson caught up with Nakobe Dean before he left campus and the nation’s top inside linebacker had quite a bit to say.
For starters, when he arrived in Oxford (with four-star teammate Raydarious Jones), the ENTIRE Ole Miss staff was waiting on them and their families.
“That was surprising, man,” Dean said about seeing the entire coaching staff waiting for him when he got to Oxford. “That was crazy, actually for them to be up there at 4:50 after entertaining recruits all night.”
Dean told Johnson that even though he’s been on campus plenty of times already (15 times this year if you’re keeping score at home), this time he wanted to interact more with the players.
“For me, this time I wanted to hang out with the boys. All throughout my recruitment, coaches have been the ones answering recruiting questions. The players are the ones going through this, and they answered my questions.”
But, he did meet with head coach Matt Luke to talk shop before the weekend was over. And naturally the vacant defensive coordinator topic came up. And Nakobe wasn’t bashful about asking about other things in regards to Ole Miss.
“He cleared a lot of stuff up. I expressed some concerns I had about some things, but he cleared them up.”
And speaking of the DC position, we mentioned Alabama co-defensive coordinator Pete Golding on our hot board last week, and Saban’s assistant was on Dean’s mind as well during his meeting with Luke.
The No. 15 overall player in the country knows Golding is Luke’s top candidate to coach him at Ole Miss and the two spoke about it.
“Yes it has,” Dean said when asked about Golding’s potential candidacy at Ole Miss being discussed. He offered no further comment on the matter.
Here’s the deal, we don’t know what all was said behind closed doors between Luke and Dean. But, since it has all been confirmed by Luke himself that Golding is the No. 1 target to be Wesley McGriff’s replacement, we can surmise that the two had a lot to talk about this weekend.
And Neal McCready and Chase Parham said as much on their Monday episode of their podcast. So for now, we are on Golding Watch until he says ‘no’.
Further, Golding visited Dean last week for an in-home visit and, yeah, I’m sure it was talked about there, too.
But, the point remains. Luke still has to pry away the talented 34-year old coordinator not only from Saban, but from other Power 5 suitors as well as he has become quite the candidate after turning around UTSA’s defense in 2016 and earning the trust of Saban this year to run his defense.
If Luke were to pull this off, it would not only earn him some points in the earning the fan base back camp, but also the Rebels’ chances of landing Dean would grow exponentially.