Jamie Mitchell Talks About Anthony Summers

Olive Branch High School head football coach Jamie Mitchell talks about new MSU commitment Anthony Summers.

Olive Branch High School head football coach Jamie Mitchell has seen his share of great players during his years as a high school coach. This year, he has several that are being very highly recruited. One of those, Anthony Summers, committed to Mississippi State head coach Sylvester Croom and assistant coach Brick Haley late Tuesday afternoon. Jamie gave his thoughts about Anthony as a player and as a person.

"I've coached a bunch of players in 17 years and I'll be honest with you, he ranks very, very high among my personal favorites," said Jamie. "He is a coach's player that you love you coach. He is so competitive and he has such heart, not only in the way he plays, but in the way he approaches everything. He means well in his everyday relations with people that he encounters. And he's able to turn that same heart and passion into being a fierce football player."

As for his commitment to Southeastern Conference member Mississippi State, Jamie is very excited for Anthony.

"I'm so happy for him. I think he's made a great choice and will give Mississippi State some help," he said. "They are getting a phenomenal football player. But I can't emphasis enough the kind of person that they are getting. I told Coach Croom today that he won't have to worry about Anthony Summers not going to class or worry about him missing practice. He's built out of different fiber than that."

Jamie talked about the four schools that it ultimately came down to. And he gave credit to the efforts of the MSU coach recruiting Anthony, Brick Haley, as a big reason that MSU won out.

"I think at the very end, it came down to LSU, Florida, Ole Miss and Mississippi State," said Jamie. "Those were the four. And I'll be real honest with you, Mississippi State was probably the number 4 choice until here of late. I think that (MSU assistant coach) Brick Haley has done a masterful job of closing the gap. He built a relationship with the kid and the mom. And I think he was comfortable with that relationship."

Although it came down to four SEC schools, there were plenty of other schools he could have chosen from, 25 to 30 of them, in fact. Jamie named a few.

"You are talking about a kid that had an offer from a team (Texas) that is going to play tomorrow night (in the D-IA championship game)," he said. "He had offers from Texas, the University of Oklahoma, Nebraska, Auburn, Georgia ... you name it, he had them from everywhere. So, this is no everyday run-of-the-mill player that MSU is getting."

What is it about Anthony that caused so much excitement among the college coaches? Jamie gave his reasons why.

"I think they liked his great size and speed. He is a very, very physical player," said the veteran coach. "I think his versatility is something that a lot of people like a whole like. If he doesn't work out at safety, then he can play corner. If he doesn't work out there, then he can play wide receiver. He can return kicks. He has many ways he can help somebody's football team."

What's his opinion about how firm Anthony is with his commitment?

"I'll tell you this, Anthony is a firm, hard commitment," said Jamie. "I know that (LSU head coach) Les Miles is scheduled to be here (Wednesday). I called them so that we would be upfront and honest with them. Just to tell you how great of a player Anthony is, they still plan on being here tomorrow. I think that speaks volumes as to what they think about him. But I don't think (MSU) has to worry, because when Anthony tells you something, you can mark it down. I wouldn't worry one bit if he was (my commitment). I would be completely shocked if that would happen."


Gene Swindoll is the publisher of the Dawgs' Bite, Powered by GenesPage.com website, the source for Mississippi State sports on Scout.com sports network. You can contact him by emailing swindoll@genespage.com.

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