By Gene Phelps and Paul Jones/NEMS Daily Journal
Tupelo sophomore tailback Ashton Shumpert, a transfer from Itawamba AHS, had an impressive debut in Saturday’s scrimmage against New Albany.
The elusive 6-foot-1, 190-pound back rushed for 67 yards on eight carries and sprinted 35 yards for a touchdown on the artificial turf at Ole Miss’ Vaught-Hemingway Stadium.
“He runs hard,” offensive coordinator Andy Crotwell said. “He made some good cuts and shed some tackles.
“He’s wide open. We need some other guys to play with the same intensity.”
New Albany defeated the Wave 24-14 in the two-quarter scrimmage.
Tupelo, which doesn’t play an MHSAA Classic game this week, opens at home Aug. 27 against New Hope.
Spider-Man at QB
– Shannon senior quarterback Legilbert Bogan watched Saturday’s scrimmage against Southaven at Ole Miss with his right arm in a sling.
“I got bitten by a spider on my elbow,” he said. “I’m going to try to be back next Friday. I didn’t want to miss this scrimmage.”
The Red Raiders open their season Friday on the road at defending 5A state champion West Point.
Another senior, wide receiver Jake Scott, took a majority of the snaps against Southaven. Scott is the backup QB.
Dora, Lee sidelined
– West Point looked impressive in Saturday’s jamboree, rolling up a 35-0 score in two quarters against Itawamba AHS. The scary thing is that West Point did that with two valuable seniors on the sidelines.
Defensive end Vontarrius Dora had offseason shoulder surgery. Senior tailback Jacoby Lee suffered an ACL tear last season and then tweaked the injury in practice this month.
Green Wave coach Chris Chambless said Dora could return in Week 2 but is unsure of Lee’s status.
– Former Cleveland receiver and defensive back Jahmel McIntosh has transferred to Itawamba AHS and is hoping to be eligible to play for the Indians this fall. McIntosh’s case will be heard before the MHSAA on Tuesday morning.
McIntosh, who has a college offer from Memphis, had 119 tackles and five sacks last year for Cleveland. Offensively, he had 16 catches for 355 yards and three touchdowns.
Jackets’ go-to guy
– For the third straight year, Starkville’s Jaquez Johnson will start at quarterback, but the senior will also have other duties.
In Saturday’s jamboree at MSU, Johnson also played safety and returned punts. He scored all three of the Jackets’ touchdowns, as well, against Callaway in the two-quarter scrimmage.
“He’s gonna be our guy,” first-year Starkville head coach Jamie Mitchell said. “As he goes we will go.”
Contact Gene Phelps at 678-1593 or gene.phelps@djournal; Paul Jones is a special contributor to the Journal.