The Next Sowell?

Andrew Jelks has yet to play a down of college football. Actually, he's almost two years away, considering he's but a junior in high school.

But Jelks, a 6-foot-6, 260-pound offensive lineman, has already drawn at least one comparison to a starting left tackle in the Southeastern Conference. Ole Miss offensive line coach Mike Markuson likened Jelks' game to that of Bradley Sowell in a recent conversation between the two.

"He called me and said, ‘You look just like my left tackle I have right now.' He talked about Sowell and how I was just like him and how he loves my film," Jelks said.

"I was surprised. I'm a junior in high school, and he's talking about a starting left tackle at the SEC level. I just really appreciated that, it means he thinks a lot of me and thinks that I can maybe do some good things."

Sowell has started 24 of 25 games for Ole Miss at left tackle over the last two seasons. Jelks, meanwhile, has starred at tackle for Henry County High School in Paris, Tenn. Ole Miss offered Jelks Wednesday, his eighth offer. The Rebels join, among others, Tennessee, Vanderbilt, Duke, Louisville and Cincinnati.

"I was definitely happy to get it," Jelks said of the offer. "I've been in contact with Coach Markuson several times. Just finally getting that offer to go to Ole Miss is something special. They're definitely up there with the top teams right now."

Jelks said Vanderbilt is currently showing the most interest. But Tennessee and Ole Miss are also atop his list.

"I really like Tennessee and Vanderbilt. I love Coach Markuson. He's a great guy," he said. "I haven't gotten the chance to talk to (Ole Miss head) Coach (Houston) Nutt yet, but I think I'm going to call him (Thursday). I can't wait to talk to him.

"I'm real comfortable with those three right now."

Jelks recently visited Vanderbilt and Cincinnati, and is set to visit Ole Miss in early June. Coach Markuson, Jelks said, doesn't care if he camps at Ole Miss, only that he visits campus. He will visit Tennessee soon.

"I just want to get a feel for it," Jelks said of Ole Miss. "When I go down there, I just want to, like, know what it's like down there -- the facilities, how the students are, how the players like it. Stuff like that."

Jelks reports a 4.0 core GPA and a score of 22 on his ACT. He is rated a three-star prospect and the No. 51 offensive tackle in the country, according to Scout.com.

"Just the relationship I have with the coaches, and the relationship we've built between now and next February," Jelks said of what he will be looking for come decision time. "How they want to use me the next four years."


OM Spirit Top Stories