Jeff Koonz was hired to replace Jon Sumrall after he left Oxford for his alma mater, Kentucky. The newest assistant has been in town for a few weeks and has hit the ground running in spring ball. And now he is doing the same thing on the recruiting trail.
Three-star inside linebacker Austin Keys visited Oxford over the weekend and after meeting with the new position coach at Ole Miss, pulled the trigger and verbally committed. The second 2020 commit for the Rebels is once again an important one because of the position he plays. And being in-state and in a usual Mississippi State stronghold to boot. He holds early offers from Arkansas State, Louisiana-Lafayette, and Southern Miss.
The Seminary, Miss. native wrapped up a stellar junior campaign for the Bulldogs, finishing with 79 total tackles, 23 tackles for loss, three sacks, and one fumble recovery. He spoke with the Ole Miss Spirit’s David Johnson after committing.
“They are showing me mad love,” Keys told the Ole Miss Spirit. “I can see myself playing there, and see myself getting something new started there. I can see us going to the championship.”
Defensive line coach Freddie Roach was also recruiting Keys and he seems to have built a strong relationship with him as well. After his visit, he called head coach Matt Luke to let him know he was committing.
“Coach Luke was just like, ‘Let’s get it started,’” Keys said.
How does he fit in?
Despite not yet being ranked on 247Sports, the 6’2, 225-pound linebacker certainly looks the part on film. He moves quickly and easily inside the box, shedding blockers and making sure tackles. He has a sturdy frame already and will certainly continue to get bigger, faster, stronger with another year in high school. I expect Keys to also certainly benefit from the strength and conditioning program at Ole Miss and learning under a bright mind like Koonz.