[Premium site article] Check out the latest update on eleven players that Mississippi State is recruiting.

An October 22, 2001 Recruiting Update
by Gene Swindoll

MSU Commitments
MSU commitments Norwood, Kern, Williams, Grant, Collins, Morgan, and Riddley (Shurden was also at the game but I saw him too late to get him in the picture).

Richard Burch MSU commitment Richard Burch, who is an offensive lineman from Brandon HS, has help lead his team to an 8-0 record this year. Although Brandon HS head football coach Dan Davis does not keep up with Richard's pancake blocks, Richard said that he is, "averaging about 7 or 8 a game." Richard is receiving calls not only from Mississippi State but from, "Tennessee, Southern and Ole Miss. I haven't scheduled any official visits but I plan on taking all of them." Although he is planning on taking official visits, when I asked him if he was still firm with his commitment to MSU, he said, "pretty much."

MSU commitment Brett Morgan has helped lead his Warren Central HS team to a 4-4 record. Normally WCHS has a better record but due to lack of depth on the offensive and defensive line and a ton of injuries, they have not performed as well as past WCHS teams. Brett, who is WCHS's quarterback, said, "we are still working hard and we still have a chance to get into the playoffs. That is what we are shooting for right now." Warren Central plays at Clinton HS this Friday night. To get into the playoffs, WCHS has to win two of their last three. Although most college coaches know that Brett is an MSU commitment, he continues to receive calls from several out of state school. Brett, who remains very firm in his commitment to MSU, plans on taking one official visit and that is to Mississippi State.

Markell McKinley MSU commitment Markell McKinley, a defensive tackle from Weir (MS) HS, has made numerous tackles this year in helping lead Weir HS to a 6-2 record. Markell, along with MSU commitment Otis Riddley, are two of the top defensive linemen in the state of Mississippi this year. As far as recruiting is concerned Markell told me that, "I am still receiving a lot of call from a lot of different schools." Markell, who was MSU's first commitment, said that, "I am very firm with my commitment to State."

MSU commitment Monte Collins, an offensive lineman from Provine (Jackson, MS) HS, mentioned to me that not only has Provine recorded a 7-1 record this year but that, "I am doing great, personally." Like all of the other commitments that I talked to last night, Monte continues to receive calls from numerous college coaches. Although a solid MSU commitment, Monte said, "basically, I am still accepting offers from other schools. Alabama State just called me and different colleges call me at different times." When asked if he would take any official visits, he said he would. He also said the year that Mississippi State has had this year has not affected his thinking about State.

MSU commitment Darren Williams has helped lead Clarksdale HS to a 7-1 record. When asked what schools were calling him, Darren said that, "Florida, Tennessee, Alabama, Ole Miss, Notre Dame, LSU, Mississippi State," and many other schools are calling him. When asked about his commitment to MSU, he said that, "I am pretty firm." However, when I asked if he would be taking any official visits, he said, "I plan on taking all of my official visits." When asked what schools he would like to visit, Darren said, "I plan on visiting Florida, Tennessee, Ole Miss, Mississippi State and probably Alabama."

I wasn't able to get in touch with MSU commitments Jerious Norwood, Scott Shurden, J J Grant, Kenneth Kern and Otis Riddley.

Aries Nelson, Cleveland (MS) East Side's quarterback, has helped lead his team to a 4-4 record after a slow start. Aries, who told me that he is real good friends with Clarksdale HS's Darren Williams, has really stood out the last two games by recording a total of 558 yards (377 passing, 181 rushing) and 5 touchdowns. Recruiting-wise, Aries told me he is receiving calls from, "Mississippi State, LSU, Memphis, Mississippi Valley State, Grambling State, Delta State and Marshall." When asked if he had started setting up visits, he said, "I am thinking about calling and setting up some visits tomorrow. I want to set up a visit with Marshall tomorrow." Aries, who has unofficially attended a couple of Mississippi State's games this season, has received scholarship offers from State, Valley State, LSU, Memphis and Delta State, but as of now, he is not leaning to any school. Mississippi State's games are not the only games that he has attended as he has also attended an LSU game (Florida). He also plans on attending this week's Delta State game as well as the Mississippi State - Ole Miss Egg Bowl game.

Corvelli Haynes is a 6-foot-4, 230-pound defensive end from Cleveland (MS) East Side HS. Corvelli, who runs a 4.7 forty-yard dash, has recorded 14 sacks in the 8 games that East Side has played. Corvelli said that, "Mississippi State, Georgia and Southern Miss call me every week." Corvelli, who has already attended one MSU game this year, plans on attending at least one more MSU game later this season. As of now, he said that, "he is open right now" to the three schools that are giving him the most attention. East Side plays at Clarksdale HS in Clarksdale this Friday.

Shannon HS quarterback Ken Topps (6-foot-0, 160-pound), a player MSU is rumored to be very interested in, leads Shannon (7-1) against Amory HS this Friday. When asked about his recruitment, Ken told me that, "Southern Miss, Mississippi State, Ole Miss, Memphis, Troy State are the ones showing the most interest right now. I don't have any favorites right now." He plans on attending several games this year, including Memphis, Ole Miss and State. He had planned on attending the MSU vs Troy State game but the bad weather kept him away. Ken commented that State's poor season this year will not affect his decision in choosing a school, "because I know that they are a good team and sometimes teams have bad games." Ken also mentioned, when asked if he wanted to play or redshirt his freshman year, that he knows that he will have a lot to learn when he reaches the (college) level.

Madison Central HS (7-1) offensive lineman Kevin Pughsley is receiving calls from, "Mississippi State, Ole Miss, Troy State, Florida and Southern Miss." Kevin has not set up any official visits yet. He also said that he is, "pretty much open," to all the schools that are showing interest in him. He has attended the Southern Miss vs. Oklahoma State and Mississippi State vs. Florida games. Kevin told me that he, "plans on getting over for the (MSU vs) BYU game and probably the (MSU vs) Ole Miss game."

Ackerman HS offensive lineman Glenn Mason, one of the top offensive linemen in the state of Mississippi this year, told me that he is receiving calls from, "Mississippi State and Ole Miss."

Northwest Rankin HS linebacker Chris Booker, a Clarion-Leger top 40 recruit selection, is also receiving calls from Mississippi State, Ole Miss and several other colleges. He is a slight lean to MSU but is still open to all schools.

Gene Swindoll is the owner of Gene's Page (, the unofficial source for Mississippi State sports on the internet. You can contact him by email at

Gene's Page Top Stories