Gene Swindoll -

East Marion running back Jarveon Howard holds four early offers.

East Marion running back Jarveon Howard is among the top skill players in his home state of Mississippi. The 5-11, 202 pound ball carrier currently holds four scholarship offers with one of his most recent options coming from the home state Bulldogs of Mississippi State.

"I was just finishing up my Algebra II homework when I got a message from Coach (Greg) Knox," Howard said. "He was asking me about how I was doing and things like that and then he told me to hit him up that he wanted to talk to me."

Howard made the call to the Bulldogs' running backs coach and found out that he had earned the chance to wear the Maroon and White of Mississippi State.

"Coach Knox told me that they wanted to offer me," Howard said. "They didn't tell me how many running backs they were looking for or how many running backs were ahead of me. He just told me that I had a scholarship offer and that they wanted me to be a Bulldog."

Earlier this month, Howard spent some time on the Mississippi State campus as part of the Bulldogs' junior day events. The East Marion High School product reports that he was impressed with what he saw in Starkville.

"I liked everything about it," Howard said of Mississippi State. "It's a family up there and everybody treats you like family. I liked all of the facilities and all of the coaches. It's just a good atmosphere there. I like how they stress academics."

Howard has a friend and former high school teammate, Jonathan Abram, on the active roster at Mississippi State. Abram has shared some solid intel about the life and times of the Bulldog football players.

"He told me that the coaches take care of you up there," Howard said of Abram. "He told me that they are preparing their players for the league and for life after football. He said that they want you to be a better player, but they want you to become a man. They want to see their players graduate and be successful in life and not just football."

Arkansas State, Louisiana-Lafayette, Memphis and Mississippi State have all extended early tenders. Mississippi State has taken an early lead, but the process remains fluid.

"Right now, I would say that Mississippi State is my favorite," Howard said. "I really like the campus and the coaches, but to be fair they are the only school I have visited so far. Once I visit the other schools, then I will have a better idea of which schools I really like.

"I am going to take my time and see who all offers me. I am planning on making my decision sometime after the season."

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