Mississippi State commitment list:
Brandon Bryant, S, 5-11, 194, Tunica (Rosa Fort)
Deion Calhoun, G, 6-3, 325, Fairfield, Ala. (Restoration Academy)
William Coleman, DE, 6-5, 248, Tyler, Texas (Tyler Junior College)
Ronald Cochran, OL, 6-4, 255, Olive Branch (Olive Branch)
Logan Cooke, P, 6-5, 200, Columbia (Columbia Academy)
Deshon Cooper, LB, 6-2, 209, Decatur, Ga. (Columbia)
Lashard Durr, CB, 5-11, 181, Gulfport (Harrison Central)
Nick Fitzgerald, QB, 6-5, 210, Richmond Hill, Ga. (Richmond Hill)
Jamoral Graham, ATH, 5-10, 165, Decatur (Newton County)
J.T. Gray, ATH, 6-0, 196, Clarksdake (Clarksdale)
Gerri Green, LB, 6-4, 221, Greenville (Greenville-Weston)
Grant Harris, DE, 6-3, 270, Clinton (Clinton)
Jordan Harris, T, 6-5, 299, Stone Mountain, Ga., (Stephenson)
Braxton Hoyett, DT, 6-3, 285, Pelham, Ala., (Pelham)
Darrion Hutcherson, TE, 6-7, 250, Wesson (Copiah-Lincoln Community College)
Jesse Jackson, WR, 6-2, 201, Petal (Petal)
Elgton Jenkins, T, 6-4, 283, Clarksdale (Clarksdale)
Jocquell Johnson, T, 6-4, 308, Wesson (Copiah-Lincoln Community College)
Dontavian Lee, RB, 6-1, 211, Brooklyn (Forrest County AHS)
Chris Rayford, CB, 6-0, 182, Byhalia (Byhalia)
Elijah Staley, QB, 6-6, 231, Marietta, Ga., (Wheeler)
Cory Thomas, DE, 6-5, 273, McCalla, Ala. (McAdory)
Aeris Williams, RB, 6-1, 200, West Point (West Point)
* Currently enrolled
Brandon Bryant, DB, 5-11, 194, Tunica, Miss. (Rosa Fort HS)
HIGH SCHOOL: A Mississippi High School Football Coaches Association First-Team Offense Class 4A selection as an athlete … Made one of the biggest jumps on the Rivals.com board, going from an unranked safety to the No. 36 prospect during the 2013 campaign … Rated as the No. 18 prospect in the state according to ESPN.com … Named to the 2013 247Sports All-State All-Prospect Second-Team Defense as a defensive back … As a senior, helped head coach Edwin Norwood and Rosa Fort to an 11-2 overall record and a 4A Region 2 title with a 5-0 mark … Advanced to the third round of the MHSAA 4A state playoffs … Anchor of a defensive unit that allowed just 16.4 points per game and posted one shutout … In 2013, went 11-of-15 passing for 257 yards with two touchdowns and five interceptions … Added 117 carries for 896 yards and 10 touchdowns as well as 22 receptions for 339 yards and two touchdowns … Selected as the MaxPreps Rosa Fort Offensive Player of the Year following the 2013 campaign after accounting for 1,112 all-purpose yards and 1,237 total yards … On defense recorded 37 tackles, two interceptions (one returned for a touchdown), five pass breakups and one fumble forced … Had one kickoff return for 91 yards and one touchdown … Passed for 563 yards and five touchdowns and rushed for 700 yards and three scores as a junior … In 2012 season opener versus North Panola, rushed for 143 yards on 16 carries and threw a touchdown pass … A high school teammate of current Bulldog Benardrick McKinney … Uncle graduated from Mississippi State.
Deion Calhoun, OL, 6-3, 325, Pleasant Grove, Ala. (Restoration Academy)
HIGH SCHOOL: A two-way standout for Coach DeWayne Coker and the first Restoration Academy player ever to sign a Division I football scholarship . . . Rated the No. 46 overall prospect in Alabama by Scout.com, and the No. 7 offensive lineman in the state . . . Has played all three positions on the line during his career at some point . . . A first-team all-state recipient as a defensive lineman in the AISA by the Alabama Sports Writers Association . . . Selected by the AISA for the East-West All-Star Game as an offensive lineman, and he was named All-Metro first-team offensive lineman by the Birmingham News . . . Played a leading role in the Bulldogs’ run to the AISA Class A championship game . . . Team out-scored opponents 546-88 for the season . . . Also saw some duty as a short-yardage running back and scored a touchdown in that role . . . As a junior, was the leading lineman on the Class A championship squad which only began playing 11-man football in 2004 . . . The 2012 squad posted a 13-1 record with their only loss to the eventual AAA state champions from Tuscaloosa Academy . . . His junior and senior teams posted a combined 25-3 record with consecutive Region 1 championships.
Ronald Cochran, OL, 6-4, 255, Olive Branch, Miss. (Olive Branch HS)
HIGH SCHOOL: Talented in-state offensive lineman from who played for head coach Scott Samsel … The state’s No. 8-rated offensive tackle prospect by Rivals.com . . . Selected to play for the North Team in the 2013 Bernard Blackwell All-Star Game … Helped pave the way for the offense to tally 358 points, an average of 29.8 points a game … Squad reached the 40-point plateau twice, including posting 71 versus Raleigh-Egypt.
Will Coleman, DE, 6-5, 248, Tyler, Texas (Tyler JC)
JUNIOR COLLEGE: A two-year letterwinner for head coach Danny Palmer … Named to the Second Team All-Southwest Junior College Football Conference … A three-star recruit according to ESPN.com, Rivals.com, Scout.com and 247Sports … Guided the Apaches to 9-2 overall record and a 47-21 victory against Garden City Community College in the Football Capital of Kansas Bowl in Dec. 2013 … Squad finished the season ranked No. 10 in the final NJCAA poll … During second year with the program, tallied 66 tackles, 8.0 tackles for loss, 4.0 sacks, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery … Ranked 11th among all junior college players, and first in the conference, in fumble recoveries with three … Stood 11th in the NJCAA with 63 solo tackles … Made a career-high 10 tackles against Navarro College on Oct. 5 … In Kansas Bowl versus Garden City CC, booked a season-best 2.5 sacks for a total of 12 yards lost and recovered a pair of fumbles … Tallied nine tackles in three games (Kilgore College, Blinn College and the Kansas Bowl) … As a rookie, notched 18 stops and one sack while breaking up a pair of passes … A teammate of Bulldog wide receiver Jeremey Chappelle at Tyler Junior College.
HIGH SCHOOL: Attended Tyler Lee High School … Participated in track throwing the discus and won the District 11-5A title with a toss of 175-09.
Logan Cooke, K/P, 6-5, 200, Kokomo, Miss. (Columbia Academy)
HIGH SCHOOL: One of the top punters in the nation, who was selected to play in the 2014 Offense-Defense All-American Bowl and the Mississippi Association of Independent Schools’ All-State Football Game … Played for coach Kenny Williams at Columbia Academy and took on wide receiver and defensive back roles in addition to punting duties … Named a 2013 Preseason Fourth-Team All-American by Chris Sailer Kicking … Rated by ESPN.com as the 13th-best punter in the nation … A 2013 247Sports All-State All-Prospect First-Team Defense selection … A member of the MaxPreps 2013 Mississippi Preseason All-State Football Team … A three-star recruit according to ESPN.com, Scout.com and 247Sports … Selected to the 2013 All-Gridiron Second Team by the Mississippi Gridiron and was a Second-Team All-Area honoree by the Hattiesburg American following final campaign … In 2013, booted 19-of-22 kickoffs for touchbacks (86.4 percent) … Tallied 24 punts for an average of 44.2 yards per boot … Went 8-of-11 on extra points and 1-for-3 on field goals … Also served as a wide receiver, hauling in 14 passes for 225 yards and two touchdowns … As a junior in 2012, boomed 48 kickoffs with 41 touchbacks (85.4 percent) … Recorded 17 kickoffs for 70 or more yards (35.4 percent) and averaged 66.4 yards a boot … Went 36-for-39 on PATs and 2-for-6 on field goals … Set Columbia Academy school records for points in a season by a kicker (42) and points in a career by a kicker (83) … During sophomore year, averaged 58 yards a kickoffs, went 20-for-23 on PATs and two-of-six on field goals … Punted 31 times for a 35-yard average … Served as the vice president of high school’s Fellowship of Christian Athletes group.
Deshon Cooper, LB, 6-2, 209, Atlanta, Ga. (Columbia HS)
HIGH SCHOOL: One of the South’s top linebacker prospects … Helped Columbia to a 6-4 overall record and to a play-in game against Banneker to qualify for the Class 4A playoffs … A three-star recruit according to Scout.com, Rivals.com and 247Sports … Earned a place on the Georgia Sports Writers Association Class AAAA All-State First Team Defense … Selected to play in the Georgia-Florida All-Star Game after final season … Tallied 49 tackles, 17.0 tackles for lost yardage, 16.0 sacks, five forced fumbles and one fumble recovery during senior year … On offense made 18 receptions for 335 yards and three touchdowns … As a junior, made 63 tackles with 6.0 sacks and four forced fumbles … Contributed on offense with 123 receiving yards and two scores … Also suited up for the basketball squad at Columbia … Won the Georgia High School Association Class 4A state championship first two years before falling to Eagle’s Landing 61-47 as a junior.
Lashard Durr, CB, 5-11, 181, Gulfport, Miss. (Harrison Central HS)
HIGH SCHOOL: A First-Team Mississippi Association of Coaches Class 6A All-State selection in 2013 … Helped Harrison Central and head coach Steve Jones to a 7-5 record and a first-round appearance of the Mississippi High School Athletic Association Class 6A playoffs … Red Rebels won four of their last five games to secure the school’s first trip to the state tournament since 2009 … Named to the 2013 247Sports All-State All-Prospect Second-Team Defense as a defensive back … Selected to the 2013 All-Gridiron Second Team by the Mississippi Gridiron … Took part in the 10th Annual Max Emfinger All-American Bowl in January and received an invitation to play in the Texas vs. the World Game on Feb. 23, in Dallas … A three-star recruit according to ESPN.com, Rivals.com, Scout.com and 247Sports … Rated as the 16th-best prospect in the state by ESPN.com … On defense as a senior, tallied 61 tackles, three interceptions, seven pass breakups, one blocked field goal and one forced fumble … Offensively during final campaign, registered five rushes for 68 yards and 11 receptions for 287 yards and three touchdowns … As a return specialist, recorded four touchdowns on punt returns and ran back one kickoff 53 yards … Sparked a Harrison Central comeback win versus Ocean Springs with an 81-yard punt return for a TD to turn a 14-3 deficit into an eventual 17-14 victory … Knocked away the final pass of the contest to seal the victory … Prior to senior year, was named one of the top performers at the New Level Athletics Space Coast Shootout in Rockledge, Fla. … During junior year, booked 41 tackles with seven interceptions and five pass breakups … Ran track for Harrison Central, participating in the 100-meter dash, 110-meter hurdles, 200-meter run, 300-meter hurdles, long jump and triple jump … As a sophomore, placed fifth in the 110-meter hurdles at the Mississippi High School Athletic Association 6A state championship.
Nick Fitzgerald, QB, 6-5, 210, Richmond Hill, Ga. (Richmond Hill HS)
Officially enrolled early at MSU in January 2014 and will join Bulldogs for spring drills … Participated in Liberty Bowl practices on campus, thus signed a grant-in-aid with the program instead of a letter-of-intent (per NCAA policy).
HIGH SCHOOL: A four-year letterwinner for head coach Lyman Guy who guided the Wildcats to a 10-2 overall record and the second round of the Georgia High School Association Class 5A State Football Championship as a senior … Earned Honorable Mention Georgia Sports Writers Association and Atlanta Journal Constitution Class 5A All-State selections following senior year … Named the Region 3-5A Player of the Year after final campaign … A three-star recruit according to ESPN.com and 247Sports … A triple-option quarterback who went 33-for-76 in the air, throwing for 778 yards and 12 touchdowns while tossing just three interceptions during final campaign … Carried the ball 182 times for 1,429 yards and 25 scores in 2013 … Lifted the Wildcats to opening-round playoff win over Thomas County Central with 150 rushing yards and both of the team’s TDs … Tabbed the WSAV Memorial Health/Chatham Orthopaedic Associates Blitz Performer of the Week and Enmark Player of the Week for the fourth week of the season after accounting for seven touchdowns against Glynn Academy … Rushed for 162 yards and five scores and tossed two TD passes in the contest … Named to the Greater Savannah Area Football Team as both a junior and senior … Started as a wide receiver in 2012, catching 18 passes for 321 yards and four touchdowns … Served as the backup quarterback to Air Force’s Dominique Allen during junior campaign and tallied 334 yards rushing and six scores as part of the triple-option offense … Helped the Wildcats go 8-3 and reach the state playoffs for the first time since 1996 as a junior, when he was a First-Team All-Region 3-5A selection … Also named First Team All-County during after 2012 season … Played three years of basketball for Richmond Hill, averaging 7.9 points per game and 5.8 rebounds a contest as a junior.
Jamoral Graham, WR, 5-10, 165, Decatur, Miss. (Newton County HS)
HIGH SCHOOL: An elite four-star athlete for head coach Jackie Williamson at Newton County High School … Rated by ESPN.com as the third-best prospect in the state and at No. 119 on the ESPN300 … Cited by ESPN.com as having exceptional versatility, speed, ball skills and playmaking ability … A 2013 Clarion-Ledger Dandy Dozen honoree, the first ever from Newton County … Selected to participate in the 2013 All-Gridiron First Team by the Mississippi Gridiron … Chosen to play in the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Classic, but did not take part in the contest due to injury … Earned spots in the a Semper Fidelis All-American Bowl and Army All-American games … A member of the MaxPreps 2013 Mississippi Preseason All-State Football Team … Named to the 2013 247Sports All-State All-Prospect Third-Team Offense as an athlete … Has been clocked at 4.42 in the 40-yard dash … Helped the Cougars score 263 points, an average of 26.3 per game as a senior … During final campaign, tallied 52 rushes for 421 yards and five touchdowns as well as seven receptions for 91 yards and one TD … Returned three punt returns for 79 yards and a score … On defense, picked up 38 tackles (26 solos), 3.0 tackles for lost yardage, three sacks, four pass breakups and one forced fumble … Filled in at quarterback in the fifth week of the campaign, completed 6-of-9 passes for 75 yards and one touchdown while rushing for 103 yards and three scores in a 33-10 win against West Lauderdale … In the second week of the season, caught five passes for 150 yards and two touchdowns in the second quarter alone versus Choctaw Central … Named the top performer at the Steve Robertson’s annual Southern Select combine prior to senior season … During junior year, accounted for 1,430 all-purpose yards and caught 24 passes for 464 yards, averaging 19.3 yards per catch … Rushed for 495 yards as a junior … Finished with a team-best 12 touchdowns, 11 coming on the offensive side of the ball … Defensively, chipped in with 21 hits, seven pass breakups and one interception … Earned a place on the U.S. Air Force 2010 Freshman All-American Team as an athlete after averaging 34.1 yards per punt return … Ran track for the Cougars, competing in the 100 and 200-meter dashes as well as the 4×200-meter relay … Placed third in the 100-meter dash at the 2011 state championship meet … Helped the 4×200-meter unit to a second-place finish at the state meet.
J.T. Gray, S, 6-0, 196, Clarksdale, Miss. (Clarksdale HS)
HIGH SCHOOL: Played junior season at Coolidge High School in Ariz., before transferring to Clarksdale for senior campaign … Grew up in the Magnolia State and came home for final season … A three-star recruit by ESPN.com, Rivals.com, Scout.com and 247Sports … The 20th-best prospect in the state according to ESPN.com … Played at Clarksdale for head coach Henry Johnson … Team advanced to the second round of the Mississippi High School Athletic Association 5A state playoffs after a 38-21 victory against Ridgeland in the postseason opener … Team fell to Callaway in the second round of the playoffs … Named to the 2013 247Sports All-State All-Prospect First-Team Defense … A member of The Clarion-Ledger’s Targeted 22 … Selected to take part in the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Classic … Earned Arizona Division IV Section II First-Team honors as a defensive back after junior season and second-team accolades as a running back in 2012 … Played on both sides of the ball as a senior and recorded 58 tackles … Offensively, rushed for 939 yards and 16 scores … As a junior at Coolidge, tallied 60 carries for 914 yards and 15 scores while catching 10 passes for 117 yards and a TD … Defensively, booked a team-leading 112 tackles (75 solo) and two interceptions … On special teams, added a combined 271 yards on kickoff and punt returns … As a freshman for Clarksdale, rushed 11 times for 42 yards … On defense, intercepted one pass and returned it 15 yards … Named the MVP of the Rivals Camp Series at Hamilton High School in March, 2013 … Ran track for Coolidge and qualified for the state meet in the 100-meter dash, 200-meter run, high jump and long jump.
Gerri Green, LB, 6-4, 221, Greenville, Miss. (Greenville Weston HS)
HIGH SCHOOL: A four-star standout linebacker by 247Sports and Scout.com … Ranked as the 12th-best prospect in the state by ESPN.com … Played for head coach Shannon Williams’ Greenville Weston Hornets … Invited to participate in the Mississippi-Alabama All-Star Classic and Semper Fidelis All-American Bowl … A member of The Mississippi Press’ Fantastic 15 list of the state’s top collegiate football prospects at the beginning of the 2013 season … A 2013 Clarion-Ledger Dandy Dozen selection, just the second in school history joining Quentin Groves (2002) … A member of the MaxPreps 2013 Mississippi Preseason All-State Football Team and the Mississippi Gridiron 2013 All-Gridiron First Team … Named to the 2013 247Sports All-State All-Prospect First-Team Defense … As a senior, tallied 98 tackles with 11.5 for lost yardage and 5.0 sacks … Broke up seven passes, forced a trio of fumbles and recovered one during 2013 campaign … On offense, made six catches for 96 yards and two touchdowns … Selected as the MaxPreps Defensive Player of the Game following performances versus Clarksdale and Gentry … During junior year, notched 89 tackles, four pass breakups, three fumble recoveries and two forced fumbles … On offense, carried just eight times for 37 yards, but caught 10 passes for 172 yards and a pair of touchdowns as a tight end.
Grant Harris, DT, 6-3, 270, Bolton, Miss. (Clinton HS)
HIGH SCHOOL: One of the top defensive line prospects in the state of Mississippi … A three-star selection by 247Sports, Rivals.com, ESPN.com and Scout.com … Named to the 2013 Clarion-Ledger Dandy Dozen … Became just the fourth Clinton player to be named Dandy Dozen and first since 2000 … Possesses an 80-inch wingspan … Notched 92 tackles, 10 tackles for loss, four sacks and two forced fumbles as a senior … Racked up 71 tackles, six sacks and one forced fumble as a junior … Coached by Judd Boswell.
Jordan Harris, OL, 6-5, 299, Stone Mountain, Ga. (Stephenson HS)
HIGH SCHOOL: A three-star recruit according to ESPN.com, Rivals.com, Scout.com and 247Sports … Rated as the 130th-best offensive tackle in the nation according to ESPN.com … Selected to play in the second annual Florida-Georgia All-Star Game … Helped Stephenson to a 9-3 overall record and 7-2 mark in 5A Region 6 action during the 2013 campaign … Played for head coach Ron Gartrell’s Jaguars … Helped the offense score 383 points during the campaign, an average of 31.9 per contest … Squad topped the 40-point plateau four times and scored a year-high 62 points at Dunwoody on Sept. 13 … Lifted the Jaguars to a 27-7 win against Flowery Branch in the opening round of the Georgia High School Association (GHSA) 5A playoffs before falling to North Paulding 35-7 in the second round … Named to the Class 5A preseason all-state team prior to senior year … A 5A All-Region 6 First-Team selection as a junior … Guided the Jaguars to a 9-3 record and 7-2 region mark during junior campaign … Squad advanced to the third round of the GHSA playoffs with victories against Pope and East Paulding in the first two rounds … Helped pave the way for the Jaguars to 365 points during junior campaign, an average of 30.4 points a contest … Team tallied 40 or more points twice, including tallying 63 at Lakeside in the third week of the season.
Braxton Hoyett, DT, 6-3, 285, Pelham, Ala. (Pelham HS)
HIGH SCHOOL: A three-star recruit according to ESPN.com, Rivals.com and 247Sports … The 30th-best prospect in Alabama, and the 84th-best defensive tackle in the country, according to ESPN.com … Played for head coach Brett Burnett and helped the Panthers to a 6-5 overall record as a senior … An AlabamaVarsity.com Super All-State Second Team selection and a Friday Night Fuel Team Alabama Defense pick … Earned a spot in the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Classic … Made 73 tackles with 9.0 tackles for loss and 3.0 sacks while adding one fumble recovery during senior year … As a junior, booked 101 tackles with 15.0 TFL and 10.0 sacks … Broke up three passes as a junior … Ran track for Pelham and was the Shelby County champion in the shot put with a throw of 42-feet, 9.5 inches … Second cousin is New York Giant Justin Tuck.
Darrion Hutcherson, TE, 6-7, 250, Dadeville, Ala. (Copiah-Lincoln CC)
JUNIOR COLLEGE: Suited up at tight end for two years for head coach Glenn Davis at Copiah-Lincoln … A three-star recruit according to Rivals.com and 247Sports … Led Copiah-Lincoln to a 7-2 overall record in 2013 … Part of an offense that averaged 432.9 yards a game, the 13th-best mark in the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) … Hauled in a season-high two passes for 20 yards against Pearl River on Oct. 12 … Tallied a season-long 28-yard reception versus Hinds Community College on Sept. 19 … During first year on campus, helped the Wolfpack finish 9-3 and claim the Mississippi Association of Community & Junior Colleges (MACJC) State Championship … Played defensive end as a rookie.
HIGH SCHOOL: Attended Dadeville High School and played for head coach Richard White … Was the 20th-ranked tight end nationally and 18th-best player from Alabama according to Rivals.com … Ranked as the 14th-best player in Alabama by Scout.com … The 13th-ranked tight end nationally and 14th-best prospect from Alabama on 247Sports’ big board … The 31st-best tight end nationally and the 25th-best recruit from Alabama according to ESPN.com … Ranked 15th overall in Alabama by SuperPrep … Ranked 12th on the Birmingham News’ 2012 Super Seniors … Member of the 4A Alabama Sports Writers Association All-State Team in senior season … Selected to play in the 2012 Offense-Defense All-American Game following senior season … Caught 31 passes for 550 yards and 6 touchdowns on offense while collecting 36 tackles (18 solo) including 2 sacks and 1 INT on defense in his senior season … Guided the Tigers to a 12-1 record and trip to the Alabama High School Athletic Association 4A state tournament quarterfinals … During junior campaign, tallied 57 tackles with 6.0 sacks … Offensively, hauled in 14 passes for more than 400 yards … Also played basketball for the Tigers
PERSONAL: Born June 12, 1993 … Son of Rachel Hutcherson and Darryl Heard.
Jesse Jackson, WR, 6-2, 201, Petal, Miss. (Petal HS)
HIGH SCHOOL: A four-star recruit according to ESPN.com and checked in No. 129 on the ESPN300 list … The fourth-best in-state prospect according to ESPN.com … Selected to participate in the 2014 Under Armour All-America High School Football Game … Played for head coach Marcus Boyles … A three-star prospect according to Scout.com and 247Sports … Slated at No. 4 on The Mississippi Press’ Fantastic 15 list of the state’s top collegiate football prospects at the beginning of the season … A member of the MaxPreps 2013 Mississippi Preseason All-State Football Team … Selected to the 2013 All-Gridiron First Team by the Mississippi Gridiron … Named to the 2013 247Sports All-State All-Prospect Second-Team Offense … Rated as the No. 27 wide receiver in the nation by the 247Sports Composite … Finished the year as the No. 11 recruit in Mississippi according to Scout.com … Helped Petal to a 10-3 record and a trip to the second round of the Mississippi High School Athletic Association Class 6A state playoffs … Did not play entire senior season due to injury suffered during 42-7 win against Jim Hill … Prior to injury, caught 22 passes for 332 yards and three touchdowns … As a junior, hauled in 39 passes for 842 yards and 11 TDs … Tallied 1,018 all-purpose yards as a junior after adding 176 yards on kickoff returns … Contributed on defense with 17 tackles during junior campaign … Transitioned from quarterback to wide receiver following freshman year … Also played basketball as a freshman at Petal and played baseball as a freshman and sophomore.
PERSONAL: Mother, Angela, played basketball at Southern Miss (1997-2000) and spent time with the WNBA’s Cleveland Rockers and Portland Fire.
Elgton Jenkins, OL, 6-4, 283, Clarksdale, Miss. (Clarksdale HS)
HIGH SCHOOL: A three-star recruit according to 247Sports … Rated as the 15th best prospect in Mississippi by 247Sports … Was a high school teammate of fellow 2014 signee J.T. Gray as a senior … Two are the first SEC prospects from Clarksdale since Charles Mitchell went to the NFL after four years at Mississippi State . . . Earned Second-Team 5A Mississippi Association of Coaches All-State honors as a senior … Selected to play for the North Team as an offensive lineman in the Bernard Blackwell All-Star Football Game following final year … Earned a place on the Mississippi High School Athletic Association (MHSAA) Region 1-5A First All-Region Team … Played for head coach Henry Johnson and helped the Cougars to a 7-5 record in 2013 … Team advanced to the second round of the MHSAA 5A state playoffs after a 38-21 victory against Ridgeland in the postseason opener … Played on both sides of the line during final campaign . . . Collected19 tackles with 2.0 sacks in 2014.
Jocquell Johnson, OL, 6-4, 308, Jackson, Miss. (Copiah-Lincoln CC)
Officially enrolled early at MSU in January 2014 and will join the Bulldogs for spring drills, thus signed a grant-in-aid with the program instead of a letter-of-intent (per NCAA policy).
JUNIOR COLLEGE: Suited up at left tackle for two years at Copiah-Lincoln for head coach Glenn Davis … Started every game of two-year career … A three-star recruit according to Scout.com and 247sports.com … Became the first Copiah-Lincoln player to sign with MSU since offensive lineman Phillip Freeman in 2007 … Led the Wolfpack to a 7-2 overall record in 2013 … Helped the offense surpass the 40-point plateau four times as the Wolfpack averaged 33.7 points a contest … Part of an offensive line that allowed the Wolfpack to average 432.9 yards a game, the 13th-highest total among NJCAA clubs … During first year on campus, helped the Wolfpack finish 9-3 and claim the Mississippi Association of Community & Junior Colleges (MACJC) State Championship, the program’s first since 1985, with a 41-37 victory over Gulf Coast … Squad participated in the Mississippi Bowl and was ranked No. 14 in the final NJCAA poll.
HIGH SCHOOL: Attended Callaway High School and played for head coach Daryl Jones … Took part in the 2011 Mississippi-Alabama All-Star Classic … Named to the Mississippi Coaches Association 5A First Team All-State Team and the all-metro team in 2011 … Helped the Chargers to playoff trips as a sophomore and junior … Tallied 14 pancake blocks in a 20-0 shutout of Provine during junior campaign.
Dontavian Lee, RB, 6-1, 211, Hattiesburg, Miss. (Forrest County HS)
HIGH SCHOOL: A three-star recruit according to ESPN.com, Rivals.com and 247Sports for head coach Larry Dolan … Earned a spot on the Mississippi High School Football Coaches Class 4A First-Team All-State Offense squad as a senior and the second team as a junior … The 59th-best running back in the country according to Scout.com and rated as the 23rd-best prospect in the state by ESPN.com … A member of the MaxPreps 2013 Mississippi Preseason All-State Football Team … Named to the 2013 247Sports All-State All-Prospect Second-Team Offense … Selected to the 2013 All-Gridiron Second Team by the Mississippi Gridiron … Checked in at No. 17 in the Clarion-Ledger’s Targeted 22 … Took part in the Mississippi-Alabama All-Star Classic … Carried Forrest County to the Mississippi High School Athletic Association 4A state championship with a 21-6 victory against Lafayette … Title was the first in the history of the Aggie program, which finished the campaign with a 13-2 overall record and made its initial appearance in the state finals … Team lost just one game to a 4A squad during the campaign … In the championship game, rushed for 43 yards and had a key 15-yard touchdown reception that put the Aggies ahead 21-6 with 4:20 remaining in the third quarter … In the state quarterfinal game versus St. Stanislaus, tallied 253 all-purpose yards, including 90 rushing and 128 receiving … For the season, gained 1,590 yards rushing on 222 carries and registered 13 touchdowns while hauling in 29 passes for 432 yards and eight scores as a senior … Defensively, tallied 43 tackles (31 solo stops), 5.0 tackles for lost yardage, 1.0 sack, four fumble recoveries and two forced fumbles as a linebacker … Tallied a pair of defensive touchdowns with a fumble and interception return for TDs … Returned 11 kickoffs for 250 yards … Selected as the Nov. 19 WDAM Player of the Week for performance against Columbia in the state tournament … Totaled 111 rushing yards, 22 receiving yards and two completions for 17 yards … Added six tackles and an interception returned for a touchdown versus Columbia … As a junior, carried the ball 138 times for 1,392 yards and 13 touchdowns … Caught 17 passes for 301 yards and five scores while completing all six pass attempts for 76 yards and five TDs … Earned Academy Sports and Outdoors Player of the Week for Sept. 20, 2012, after 307 rushing yards and two touchdowns against Purvis High School … As a sophomore was named a Hattiesburg American All-Star … Recorded 1,163 rushing yards on 167 carries and scored seven touchdowns … Added nine receptions for 242 yards and four scores … Also participates in basketball and track for Forrest County … In track, runs the 100-meter dash and throws the shot put.
Chris Rayford, CB, 6-0, 182, Byhalia, Miss. (Byhalia HS)
HIGH SCHOOL: A three-star recruit according to 247Sports and Scout.com … Helped Byhalia to a 4-8 overall mark and a trip to the second round of the Mississippi High School Athletic Association (MHSAA) Class 4A playoffs … Played for head coach John Danley … Earned a spot on the MHSFCA 4A First-Team All-State Defense … A FOXMemphis All-Mid-South Team pick and an All-Gridiron Third Team selection by the Mississippi Gridiron prior to the start of the 2013 campaign … A First-Team All-District honoree as a junior and a second-team selection following sophomore campaign … Named to the 2013 247Sports All-State All-Prospect Second-Team Defense … Battled through injuries, but still recorded 32 rushes for 324 yards and three touchdowns while adding a catch for 71 yards and a score … On defense, booked 64 tackles, 6.0 hits for lost yardage, 2.0 sacks, three fumble recoveries (two returned for touchdowns) and two pass breakups … Anchor of a defense that held opponents to 12 or fewer … Ran track for the Indians and qualified for the 2013 state meet in the 100-meter relay, 400-meter relay and 100-meter dash … Took fourth place at the North State meet in the 100-meter sprint as a junior.
Elijah Staley, QB, 6-6, 231, Marietta, Ga. (Wheeler HS)
HIGH SCHOOL: A four-star quarterback prospect by ESPN.com and a three-star prospect according to Rivals.com, Scout.com and 247Sports … The 18th-best quarterback in the country according to ESPN.com … Played under head coach Mike Collins for three years … Named one of MaxPreps/Reebok Top-25 Most Dynamic High School Athletes in July, 2013 … A Marietta Daily Journal Dynamite Dozen selection prior to 2013 campaign … An Honorable Mention All-Region 5-6A selection as a junior … Played five games as a senior, completing 72-of-115 passes (62.6 percent) for 1,072 yards and 12 touchdowns … Rushed for 102 yards and a pair of scores during final campaign … Prior to final campaign, took part in the Elite 11 Atlanta Camp, where he received instruction from former NFL quarterback Trent Dilfer … Threw for 1,801 yards and 12 touchdowns as a junior, taking the Wildcats back to the playoffs for the first time in six years … Added five more rushing scores during junior campaign … Lifted the squad to the playoffs with 183 passing yards in playoff-berth clinching win against Cherokee in the season finals … As a sophomore, completed 40 percent of passes for 833 yards and four touchdowns … Suited up for the Wheeler basketball team and was a Class 6A First-Team All-State selection by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and Georgia Sportswriters Association as a junior, averaging 18.0 points and 9.5 rebounds per game … Helped the Wildcats and head coach Doug Lipscomb to the state semifinals and 21-9 overall record in hoops … Scored 40 points, pulled down 18 rebounds and dished out seven assists against Etowah during the 2012-13 season … Played for the AAU Team Southern Stampede … A member of the Wheeler track and field program, competing in the triple jump, 100-meter dash, 200-meter race and 4×100-meter relay team.
PERSONAL: Son of Norman and Sharon Campbell … Half-brother of Greek professional basketball player, and former Georgetown standout, Patrick Ewing Jr.
Cory Thomas, DT, 6-5, 273, Bessemer, Ala. (McAdory HS)
HIGH SCHOOL: A three-star recruit according to ESPN.com, Rivals.com, Scout.com and 247Sports … Rated as the 19th-best prospect in the state of Alabama by ESPN.com … A four-year letterwinner for head coach David Powell … 2013 Alabama Sports Writers Association First-Team 5A All-State selection following junior and senior campaigns … Earned a place on the MaxPreps 2013 Alabama Preseason All-State Football Team … Helped the Yellow Jackets to a 10-3 overall record and 6-1 mark in Region 5 contests as a senior … Squad advanced to the quarterfinals of the Alabama High School Athletic Association (AHSAA) 5A state playoffs before falling to Southside 28-25 … Anchor of a defense that surrendered only 161 points, an average of 12.4 per contest … Recorded 75 tackles and 3.0 sacks during final campaign … Recovered a fumble against Southside in the quarterfinals that led to a touchdown and 7-0 McAdory lead … Played as a safety as a freshman … Also has suited up for the basketball program.
Aeris Williams, RB, 6-1, 200, West Point, Miss. (West Point HS)
HIGH SCHOOL: A four-star recruit according to ESPN.com, Scout.com and 247Sports and a three-star prospect by Yahoo.com … A three-year starter for head coach Chris Chambless … Ranked as the 42nd-best running back in the country and the 11th-best recruit in Mississippi by ESPN.com … The Mississippi Association of Coaches 5A Offensive Player of the Year as a senior … A 2013 Clarion-Ledger Dandy Dozen selection who was also a member of The Mississippi Press’ Fantastic 15 list of the state’s top collegiate football prospects at the beginning of senior season … Became the fourth Dandy Dozen player from West Point, joining Chris Washington (1989), Chris Jefferson (1990) and Michael Carr (2009) … Took part in the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Classic … A 2014 U.S. Army All-American Bowl nominee … Finished just shy of the 4,000-yard rushing mark (3,994 yards) in prep career … Gained 1,697 rushing yards and 21 touchdowns on 265 carries during senior year … Registered nine receptions for 85 yards and a score during final campaign … Selected as the WCBI-TV Offensive Player of the Year following senior year … Against Center Hill, rushed for 252 yards and four touchdowns (32, 27, five and 15 yards) to help Green Wave to 69-41 victory … Rushed for 1,519 yards as a junior with five touchdowns on 268 carries … Added six receptions for 77 yards in 2012 … A Columbus Dispatch All-Area Second-Team honoree as a junior, when the Green Wave advanced to the MHSAA 5A state semifinals … Versus Hernando in 49-14 victory, ran for 112 yards and three scores (four, 10 and 15 yards) … During sophomore season, rushed for 778 yards on 129 carries and contributed 12 scores … Hauled in 13 passes for 250 yards and a pair of TDs as a sophomore.
PERSONAL: Family lived in Racine, Wis., before moving to West Point.
(From MSU Media Relations)