By Zach Adams/The Itawamba County Times
FULTON – There was plenty of signing day drama in North Mississippi but for Itawamba AHS 4-star running back Ashton Shumpert.
As expected, Shumpert signed with Mississippi State Wednesday after being committed to the Bulldogs since Jan. 7.
“I have been waiting on this day for a long time,” Shumpert said. “I’m glad to get the signing over so we can finally get back to business.”
Shumpert rushed for 1,796 yards and 25 touchdowns in 2012 to help lead the Indians to 12-1 record and a berth in the 4A state quarterfinals.
“I really wasn’t going to commit (before signing day), but I thought about it for a long time and Mississippi State was where I wanted to go,” Shumpert said of his initial verbal pledge to the Bulldogs. “Most people probably commit before their senior year before they go visit the schools and everything. If you go visit the school and see something that you like, you will probably commit to them.”
Shumpert burst onto the scene as a freshman at IAHS before playing his sophomore and junior seasons at Tupelo. He transferred back to IAHS last summer where he joined second-year head coach Toby Collums’ program.
“I’ve said it all along, the kid is far beyond his years as far as maturity is concerned,” Collums said. “Once he made the commitment, there was absolutely zero waver in it.”
Shumpert cited the “family-type” atmosphere and relationships with current players and coaches for reasons why he chose the Bulldogs. He also believes the future of Mississippi State football is bright.
“We have just got to keep working and keep getting better,” Shumpert said. “We can’t slow down now.”