NCF On The Trail: Jeremy Liggins

Midyear Signings: Ole Miss

December, 21, 2013
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According to OleMissSports.com, the following players have signed with the Rebels:

Fahn Cooper, OT, Crystal Lake, Ill./College of Dupage
HT: 6-5 WT: 315
Positional Rank: No. 5 OT Juco
Stars: 4
ESPN JC50 (No. 18)

Jeremy Liggins, ATH, Oxford, Miss./Northwest Mississippi CC
HT: 6-4 WT: 285
Positional Rank: No. 2 ATH Juco
Stars: 4
ESPN JC50 (No. 20)

Christian Russell, ILB, Raeford, N.C./East Mississippi CC
HT: 6-1 WT: 245
Positional Rank: No. 1 ILB Juco
Stars: 4
ESPN JC50 (No. 22)

Kendrick Doss, QB-DT, Florence, Ala./Florence
HT: 6-2 WT: 215
Positional Rank: No. 23 QB-DT
Stars: 3

Christian Morris, OT, Memphis, Tenn./UCLA
HT: 6-6 WT: 290

Ole Miss scores big with DT McDowell

December, 20, 2013
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The Ole Miss Rebels continue to show they are here to stay under the direction of head coach Hugh Freeze. Already sitting at No. 15 in the RecruitingNation class rankings, the Rebels added to an impressive haul Friday, picking up a commitment from defensive tackle Garrald McDowell (Covington, La./Covington).

The 6-foot-1, 257-pound, athletic McDowell is the No. 110 prospect in the country, and becomes the fourth ESPN 300 prospect to pledge to Ole Miss following No. 49 Rod Taylor (Jackson, Miss./Callaway), No. 92 Markell Pack (Purvis, Miss./Purvis) and No. 134 C.J Hampton (Meridian, Miss./Meridian).
Defensive tackle is a key position of need for the Ole Miss staff in the 2014 class. McDowell becomes the fourth defensive tackle to commit to the Rebels, a group that includes four-star senior riser Breeland Speaks (Jackson, Miss./Callaway).

Earlier in the week, the Rebels signed three four-star junior college prospects in offensive tackle Fahn Cooper (Crystal Lake, Ill./College of Dupage), defensive lineman Jeremy Liggins (Oxford, Miss./Northwest Mississippi Community College) and inside linebacker Christian Russell (Raeford, N.C./East Mississippi Community College).

Ole Miss now has 26 commitments, including 13 four-star prospects. The Rebels remain in the hunt for No. 65 overall Nyles Morgan (Crete, Ill./Crete-Monee), No. 120 Wesley Green (Lithonia, Ga./Martin Luther King) and four-star offensive guard Jordan Sims (Birmingham, Ala./Homewood), among others.

Ole Miss signed the No. 5 class a year ago, which included 2013 SEC All-Freshman selections Laremy Tunsil (Lake City, Fla./Columbia), Laquon Treadwell (Crete, Ill./Crete-Monee), Robert Nkemdiche (Logansville, Ga./Grayson) and Antonio Conner (Batesville, Miss./South Panola).

McDowell will play in the 2014 Under Armour All-America Game on Jan. 2 at 4 p.m. EST on ESPN.

2014 junior college overview

December, 5, 2013
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The Junior College signing period is almost here, and with that is the release of the 2014 JC player rankings.

The best way to build a program is through recruiting high school prospects who can be developed in a particular program's mold and will be around for a longer period of time.

As someone who both played (Nassau) and coached (Hutchinson) at the junior college level, I have a tremendous respect for this level of football and the opportunities it can offer to young prospects and the talent it can produce. Junior colleges can provide college programs with opportunities to fill holes on their rosters with older and more experienced players while they recruit and develop high school prospects for the long term.

Junior colleges can provide a program with an impact-type player at times, the way quarterback Cam Newton was at Auburn or linebacker Lavonte David was at Nebraska. At other times and more frequently, it can provide ways for a college program to supplement and strengthen its depth chart.

Below is an overview of the 2014 crop of junior college prospects and what they have to offer for college programs.

The big catch: The battle for the top spot came down to a pair of receivers, and it was a close call. The edge went to D’haquille Williams (Laplace, La./Mississippi Gulf Coast CC), a receiver with an excellent combination of size and athleticism. A current Auburn verbal, Williams is still a bit raw in areas, but he possesses great ball skills and big-play ability and is talented enough to come in and make an impact as a receiving target.

An argument for the No. 1 spot was also made for Lavon Pearson (Quincy, Calif./Feather River College), who is close behind at No. 2. A Tennessee verbal, Pearson is arguably a little more well-rounded as a pure receiver prospect at this point than Williams, but he doesn’t possess quite the same stature or physical tools. What the fluid receiver does bring is excellent ball skills and the ability to be dangerous after the catch. Pearson could come in and have an immediate impact in a similar manner to former Volunteers receiver and juco import Cordarrelle Patterson.

Tight coverage: It is not a particularly strong crop of secondary prospects, but a pair of talented cornerbacks lead this group and landed in the top 10. Shattle Fenteng (Loganville, Ga./Hutchinson CC) is the top-rated CB. He is a physical, explosive man-to-man matchup defender. A Georgia commit, he possesses the ability to mirror quicker wide receivers. Standing 6-foot-1, he also holds up against bigger targets in red-zone/jump-ball matchups.

The other top-10 defensive back is Tee Shepard (Fresno, Calif./Holmes Community College), likely a familiar name to many recruiting fans as he was a Notre Dame commit in the 2012 class out of high school. A corner with nice size, he displays good leaping ability and ball skills and can be a physical presence at the position.

Another cornerback outside the top 10 who we believe is worth keeping an eye on is Danzel McDaniel (Dodge City, Kan./Dodge City CC). A top-50 prospect, he is an aggressive, physical, tall (6-1) and athletic corner.

Jermaine Eluemunor
Josh Moyer/ESPNJermaine Eluemunor, the top-ranked juco offensive guard, is committed to Texas A&M.
Think big: The strength of this 2014 junior college class is within the trenches as the offensive and defensive lines are the deepest group. A dozen offensive linemen landed in the top 50, including six in the top 20. The group is led by two offensive tackles and top-10 overall prospects in 6-6, 310-pound Dominick Jackson (San Mateo, Calif./College of San Mateo) and Chad Mavety (Garden City, N.Y./Nassau CC). Jackson, an Alabama verbal, brings good size, strength and agility and can offer some versatility as well. Mavety needs some polish but is a big tackle prospect (6-6, 320) with the tools to be a good, well-rounded OT and come in and contribute to a program.

Jordan Prestwood (Tampa, Fla./Arizona Western) is a name that probably rings a bell to recruiting fans as he was a promising prospect in the 2011 class and bounced around some before landing in junior college. A good athlete for his size (6-6, 315), he has grown and gained some experience as he transitions back to the FBS level. The guard position features a pair of Lackawanna College teammates in Jermaine Eluemunor and Jarell Broxton. Eluemunor (6-6, 300), who is committed to Texas A&M, could contribute at offensive tackle, though we believe his best fit will be at guard. Broxton (6-5, 328) is a big man we believe is a bit underrated in this juco class. He is a nice pickup for Baylor.

The largest group represented is the defensive tackles, with 15 in the top 50. Three defensive tackles are among the top 10, including Tennessee verbal DaVonte Lambert (Milledgeville, Ga./Georgia Military College), a tough and disruptive player. Dalvon Stuckey (DeFuniak Springs, Fla./Pearl River CC) was a promising prospect coming out in the 2012 class and remains one as an active defensive tackle. One of the more interesting prospects in this class is Alfonso Hampton (Chula Vista, Calif./Southwestern College). Someone to keep an eye on, he didn't play football in high school and is a bit of an underrated prospect, but he possesses a nice combination of size, strength and agility and displays promising upside. Recent Nebraska verbal Terrell Clinkscales (Dodge City, Kan./Dodge City CC) brings very good size (6-3, 315) and strength to the trenches.

The defensive end group is not as strong as the interior group, but some good talent can be found, led by Oregon verbal Tui Talia (Pleasant Hill, Calif./Diablo Valley) and D.J. Pettway (Pensacola, Fla./East Mississippi).

An interesting prospect in this group is jumbo athlete Jeremy Liggins (Oxford, Miss./Northwest Mississippi). With an excellent blend of size (6-4, 285) and athleticism, he has played quarterback in both high school and junior college, but we believe his best long-term fit is along the defensive line. Listed as an athlete, he could contribute in more than one way, though his lack of focus at one position could be a bit of a concern.

Empty backfield: While we believe there are some good prospects to be found on the perimeter offensively, this is not a strong group for those looking for some help in the backfield.

At quarterback, we don’t see another Cam Newton, Zach Mettenberger or Nick Marshall in this group and no quarterbacks landed in the top 50.

Tyreek Hill
Jeremy Crabtree/ESPNVersatile athlete Tyreek Hill is committed to Oklahoma State.
The running back position is slightly stronger, but only one player, Ole Miss verbal Akeem Judd (Milledgeville, Ga./Georgia Military College), is ranked among the top 50. Sitting just outside the top 50 is De’Chavon Hayes (Richmond, Va./Lackawanna College), a good all-purpose back who flashes big-play ability. Listed in the athlete category but capable of making a play in more than one way offensively -- including out of the backfield -- is Tyreek Hill (Garden City, Kan./Garden City CC). An Oklahoma State verbal, Hill is ranked No. 4 overall and can be an explosive weapon with his speed, ability to make defenders miss and ball skills. He is capable of making plays as a running back, wide receiver and in the return game.

Look beyond: The ESPN JC 50 represents the top prospects in the class, but there are also some promising prospects beyond the top 50. Geronimo Allison (Council Bluffs, Iowa/Iowa Western CC) is a tall receiver who can win foot races and make plays. Dominique Robertson (Riverside, Calif./Riverside CC) is a physical and nasty offensive tackle who landed just outside the top 50. David Moala (Norwalk, Calif./Cerritos College) is a wide-bodied and surprisingly agile defensive tackle who can be a disruptive presence.

These are just a few of the prospects who didn’t make the top 50 but can still help an FBS program. You can look at the Recruiting Nation database for evaluations of more than 100 juco prospects.

Brandon Hill now headed to Ole Miss 

November, 16, 2012
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Hargrave Military offensive tackle Brandon Hill has committed to play for Ole Miss, according to multiple sources. He made an official visit to Oxford, Miss. this week.

Hill originally signed with Alabama in 2012 as a three-star prospect out of St. George Academy (Memphis, Tenn.). During that recruiting cycle, he was offered by Georgia, Kentucky, Nebraska, Memphis, Mississippi State, Southern Miss and Tennessee.

ESPN calls Hill, "a massive offensive tackle who flashes the athleticism and ability to be a productive run/pass blocker ... a developmental prospect who has a lot of tools to work with to grow into an offensive tackle in college ... a potential late-bloomer who will need a redshirt year to polish his skills."

Hill is commitment No. 22 in the Rebels' nationally-ranked recruiting class. Another former 2012 prospect, four-star athlete Jeremy Liggins (Oxford, Miss./Lafayette), is also pledged to Ole Miss. He signed with LSU in February.

Weekly Commitment Roundup 

October, 19, 2012
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Big 12
TCU
Deryck Gildon OLB Arlington, TX, Itawamba CC
HT: 6-3 WT: 235

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Jeremy Liggins set for Ole Miss 

October, 19, 2012
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It already seemed like a done deal, but Jeremy Liggins' switch to his hometown team Ole Miss is official now.

Anthony Hart, the 2012 quarterback's coach at Lafayette High School in Oxford, Miss., confirmed that Liggins had switched his commitment from LSU to Ole Miss this semester while he waited to qualify academically.

Hart said Liggins made the decision back in August when he decided to leave Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College and return home.

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Scouts: Liggins could play D at LSU 

January, 31, 2012
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Jeremy Liggins (Oxford, Miss./Lafayette) is a great pick-up for LSU because it adds yet another player to an already powerful group of front seven players in the fold. While we realize Liggins has some skills as a QB and is a wonderful athlete, his measurables and stature will more than likely transition to defense. At around 280-pounds when we saw him in camp last summer he played almost exclusively on defense and is his best fit for long term upside.

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High three-star safety Corey Thompson (Missouri City, Texas/Elkins), a 6-foot-1, 205-pound senior, has switched his commitment from Texas A&M to LSU, according to multiple sources.

Thompson officially visited the Aggies on Jan. 13 and LSU the following weekend (Jan. 20). He also tripped to Nebraska (Jan. 6) and Oklahoma State (Jan. 27). Arkansas, UCLA, Iowa and Purdue were among the other schools to offer.

Thompson originally committed to Texas A&M last March but has been considered a “soft” verbal to the Aggies for more than a month.

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Jeremy Liggins to LSU 

January, 30, 2012
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Four-star ATH Jeremy Liggins (Oxford, Miss./Lafayette; No. 118 in the ESPNU 150) is a Tiger and will sign with LSU on Wednesday, multiple sources report. He chose the Tigers over Auburn, Ole Miss and Mississippi State.

Liggins made official visits to Auburn (Nov. 25), Ole Miss (Jan. 9), Mississippi State (Jan. 13) and LSU (Jan. 20). Arkansas, Georgia, Alabama and Tennessee were among his other scholarship offers.

The jumbo athlete played quarterback for Lafayette and totaled 8,402 yards and 105 touchdowns through the air and on the ground in his career. As a senior, he was a first-team All-State selection after throwing for 1,678 yards and 16 touchdowns while rushing for 953 yards and 18 more scores.

According to ESPNU, Liggins could remain under center at the next level or possibly end up as a tight end or defensive end given his size and athleticism.

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