- Dave Hooker, Reporter, RecruitingNation
Ole Miss seems to be a strong player for Ashton Shumpert. The Rebels will try to improve their positions this weekend when the ESPN 300 prospect visits Oxford this weekend.
While Shumpert has openly said his childhood favorite team has always been Georgia, Ole Miss has its own unique appeal, most notably location. Shumpert's high school and hometown is less than 80 miles from the Rebels' campus.
Yet there's more. The Rebels are riding some positive momentum on the field and in recruiting. Under first-year head coach Hugh Freeze, Ole Miss is 3-2 with its two losses coming against ranked teams: Texas and Alabama.
“They are rebuilding and doing a good job at it,” said Shumpert, who is a four-star athlete prospect from Fulton (Miss.) Itawamba. “Coaches are doing a great job putting the players in position to make a play.”
Certainly. In Ole Miss' three wins this season against Central Arkansas, Texas-El Paso and Tulane, the Rebels have outscored those teams 116-37. Ole Miss hasn't arrived as a top-tier SEC program but considering the program went 2-10 last season, there's reason for optimism in Oxford.
In recruiting, Ole Miss is plenty respectable as well. The Rebels have 18 commitments. Four are a part of the ESPN 300. Seven are rated as four-star prospects. Shumpert would be a welcome addition to that class. That seems a reasonable possibility since Shumpert, who visited Georgia last weekend, doesn't seem dead-set on playing for more established program.
“I would love to rebuild a program,” Shumpert said.
That's good news for Ole Miss' recruiters.