The South Panola and Lafayette County Spring game was played in front of 1, 500 plus fans at the Commodore's stadium and had several good looking Division 1 prospects.
"Their QB (Montez Phillips) is a difference maker," added South Panola head coach, Lance Pogue. "There is no question they will be the team to beat in (Class) 4A. My belief is there is not a better team in 4A, unless they are hiding somewhere. Their QB can win it on his own. He can single handily keep them going. But they have a tough front seven on defense. That number 75 (DT) is a load, and they have good skilled players. But their QB can make it happen with his arms and legs. There are not many in the state in his class."
South Panola analysis
The Tiger have won five straight Class 5A state championships and 75 straight games, which is the nation's longest winning streak, but they took a 7-0 defeat to Lafayette County last Thursday.
This offseason, they lost four of their five offensive linemen due to graduation but they did return 1st Team All-State selection, Don Blevins.
The problems with the Tiger's offense, as they failed to score a TD in the 7-0 defeat to Lafayette County on Thursday, was the fact that they were not playing with their starting QB, David Renfroe (had warts removed from hand) starting tailback Nicholas Parker and starting FB, Reuben Corley (taking care of books).
Add this to the fact that they went from a power offense to the spread this Spring and it spelled trouble.
Without their trigger man, David Renfroe, the backup QB simply did not run the spread as the Tigers would like to. But with David's accuracy and pocket awareness, expect South Panola to be a much more efficient offense next season.
|OT Don Blevins|
Don is a 6' 2", 295 pound offensive tackle that is being moved to center in the summer. He could play anywhere from guard to center on the next level.
Blevins moves his feet very well and has a good push in the running game.
"We are going to move Don to center this summer," added South Panola head coach, Lance Pogue. "He is an All-State lineman and is the only guy returning from last year's line. He will be the one that we look to give our young guys some leadership. Don will be our catalyst there next year. We think he is one of the top offensive linemen in the state. He has great strength, feet, and can really run."
LSU, MSU, Alabama, and Arkansas are his early favorites. He has not received any scholarship offers as of date. Like we see with so many South Panola prospects who dominate on the high school level, his height (6' 2") is probably hurting him a bit with the college recruiters.
We still think Don is worth taking a serious look at, regardless of his height, due to his footwork and brute strength.
The South Panola offense was lacking the explosiveness that we are so use to seeing without David in at tailback. We have seen so many talented and explosive players in the backfield in the past from Toward Samford to Marcus Griffith to Chris Young to Derek Pegues to LeRoy Diggs to Darius Barksdale.
While the Tigers had many solid tailbacks who played in the game, none had the hop and quickness that David Brought to the table.
There two longest drives came when David was in at tailback, as he only played two full series at the tailback position.
But it is on defense where David has made the biggest impact so far in his high school career.
Last season, he led the Tigers in total tackles (97), tackles for losses (18), sacks (14), and forced fumbles (3). Conner and Dennis Thames out of Louisville were the only juniors named to Mississippi's 1st Team All-State squad that includes all classifications.
"I found out last year when we played George County that a skilled player can go both ways and take the pounding and still be good at the end of the game," added Coach Pogue. "Alonzo Lawrence played CB and WR for them and was just as strong at the end of the game as he was at the start. I think David is the top player in the state of Mississippi. We are going to set 10 to 15 plays out for him on offense because he can be our home run hitter, and he is the key to our defense. I will put it this way. I would not trade David Conner for anybody else in Mississippi."
Ole Miss, MSU, and Auburn have offered. Michigan is also heavily involved.
If it were not for his lack of height, looks to be around 5' 10", he would be one of the more sought after defensive tackles in the country.
"Margarvin is just your typical nose guard. He is a little short, but he has great strength and a real powerful body," stated Coach Pogue. "He is the anchor for our run defense. Chapman is a run stopper, no question about it."
Memphis and Marshall are showing the most interest.
"Kendrick had an elbow injury and probably should have not played in the game," added Coach Pogue. "But he wanted to play anyway. He has great strength and quickness coming off of the end. He has that first step you are looking for in a speed rusher. He is 6' 2", 260 right now."
Ole Miss, Memphis, Tennessee, and MSU are showing the most interest
The 5' 10", 240 pounder is what you
term a "between the tackles" linebacker. Anything that is run between
the tackles, Marvin is going to meet you head on and he will simply lay the wood
It did look like he struggles getting outside the lanes, but with his power and physical nature, there is a spot for him on the D1 level.
"He is as good as you will find," commented Pogue. "I really think MSU is about to offer him. Marvin has great strength and great instincts. He is a true ILB and was an impact player for us last year. Burdette is a run stopper and a great kid too. He is probably the most underrated player off of our team."
MSU is showing the most interest. Memphis and Southern Mississippi are also in the mix.
Underclassmen at South Panola
Some non-seniors on South Panola's team that you will need to keep an ear out for (talking to you D1 recruiters) are rising freshman DL Isaac Gross (6' 5", 250), rising sophomore RB Quintarrius Griffin ( 5' 10", 220), and rising juniors RB Nicolas Parker (6' 1", 225) and DE Devin Clark(6' 3", 240).
**On DE Issaac Gross
"I really do not like to talk about the youngsters to the media, but I will leave it at this, he has a chance to put his mark on the South Panola program. He has it all, just a freak. We are going to bring him along slowly, but not too many 8th graders have come through this program like this one.
**On RB Quintarrius Griffin
"That is Jeramie Griffin's little brother. He is about 5' 10", 218 and has 4.7 speed. He has a great chance to be a good one here. He is a very physical back but also has great footwork. He has that good burst. Griffin has a lot of potential."
**On RB Nicholas Parker
"He did not play too much tonight because his ankle is banged up. But he is our starting tailback, and proved last year that he can really get it done on the championship level. He did a great job filling in for Tig (Darius Barksdale) last year."
**On DE Devin Clark
"He is a 6' 3", 260 pound end who I think will grow into a DT. Everybody that came through here this spring kept asking me about Devin. They were like, who is this guy? Devin will get a lot of (recruiting) attention next year. He is a big guy who has great strength. Devin is just a great athlete. We will use him some at TE too, if that gives you any indication on what type of athlete he is.
Lafayette County analysis
We will have to agree with Coach Pogue, the Commodores will have to be considered if not the favorite, one of the top favorites to win the state championship this year.
Lafayette took advantage of the new secondary that South Panola is sporting, as Montez threw a lot of deep balls that were basically hail merry passes that were completed.
The Commodores did a good job at attacking the the Tiger's weaknesses.
But like Coach Pogue said, Montez can take over a game all by himself. He is that good and will be one of the leading candidates for Mr. Football in the state of Mississippi.
Ole Miss, MSU, and USM have offered and Alabama is also in the mix.
**The #75 that Coach Pogue was alluding to was the nose guard for Lafayette County, Jermaine Pegues. If this kid were not in the 5' 9" ish range, he would be wanted by everyone in the country. He single handily destroyed the Tigers offensive line as he was in South Panola's backfield all day long.
Pegues brings a load, around 300 pounds, but is so fast off of the ball and extremely strong.
He might be one of those players that nobody takes a chance on, but one school, and they come out smelling like a rose.
Should be interesting to watch.