Gene Swindoll, Gene's Page

Senior Receiver First-Team Pick by Media

Just call Fred Ross a two-timer. As in, he has repeated now as first-team All-Southeastern Conference.

Mississippi State’s senior receiver was recognized as one of the two top targets in the league for 2016 as Associated Press picked Ross to their first team. He shares the status with Texas A&M’s Christian Kirk which gives the SEC’s ‘starting team’ a decided Maroon and White hue at each end.

Two days ago Ross was named second-team All-SEC by the league coaches. Back in July, the Bulldog co-captain was a preseason second-team selection of SEC media.

Ross wrapped up his final regular season first in receiving touchdowns for all SEC ends, with an even dozen. He was fourth in receiving yardage and sixth in scoring from all positions.

With one game remaining in his college career Ross holds the Mississippi State records for both receiving yards (2,484) and catches (195). He is tied with former teammate De’Runnya Wilson for second in touchdowns at 22, which is just a pair of scoring grabs behind Chad Bumphis’ record 24.

Fittingly Ross ended the regular season with just one catch, which went for a 38-yard touchdown against Ole Miss as the Bulldogs won back the Golden Egg and achieved bowl eligibility.

This year’s recognitions mirror what Ross received last December, literally as it’s a reverse. In 2015 he was first-team with the Coaches and second-team by AP.

Ross was the only Bulldog named to either Coaches or AP all-conference teams, first or second. The Coaches will release an all-freshman team though.

All-conference Dogs have become a staple at Mississippi State under Dan Mullen’s management. An even dozen of his players have made first-team for either Coaches or AP, now for a total of 15 times with the repeat performers. There have been a total of 22 Dogs named first- or second-team in either group a total of 29 times now in eight seasons.

Ross has accepted an invitation to the Senior Bowl, the 90th Bulldog picked for the annual classic. This edition is January 28 at Ladd-Peeples Stadium in Mobile with broadcast on the NFL Network.

Though not named to any all-conference team, senior center Jamaal Clayborn’s career continues beyond the bowl game. He has been picked for the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl, to be played January 21 at Cal State-Dominguez Hills’ campus for FS1 broadcast.

All-star games will continue filling out their rosters in coming weeks with more Bulldog seniors expected to receive invitations.

Also, with final fall semester exams ending Friday, official bowl practices begin. Until further word, everything is closed to public and media.

Mississippi State makes a seventh-straight bowl trip this year, extending the program record broken in 2013 at four, with their December 26 contest against Miami-Oh. in the St. Petersburg Bowl.

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