Bounds is Determined

NEW ALBANY, Miss. - Water Valley, Miss., quarterback E.J. Bounds isn't playing with a chip on his shoulder this season.

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Sure, he could easily use his senior year as a showcase for college recruiters. A number of schools have shown interest in the 6-foot, 180-pound Bounds, but offers are scarce. Each week presents a new opportunity to impress.

However, Bounds is only focused on being the best teammate he can be. Recruiting? Well, it can wait.

"I just come out and play my hardest each and every game," Bounds said Friday night, after the Blue Devils defeated New Albany, 38-13, in the season-opener for both teams.

"I try to be a team player and have fun and enjoy my teammates, ‘cause this will probably be my last year with some of them."

Bounds, who totaled some 1,550 yards of total offense as a junior, said he is hearing from Ole Miss, Mississippi State and Alabama, to name a few. Others have shown interest, as well, including Arkansas, Auburn and Nebraska, according to

E.J. Bounds
Yancy Porter

Ole Miss is right up the road, some 25 minutes away. Bounds is considering making the drive over for a few games this fall. The Rebels open their season at Vanderbilt on Thursday.

"They just come and talk to me," Bounds said of Ole Miss' interest. "They want me to come up to the games and stuff like that."

Bounds plays quarterback at Water Valley. But what position he will play in college differs from school to school.

"Some schools are talking to me about quarterback, but some are talking to me as an athlete," he said. "You know, come out and play anywhere. I'm up for whatever."

Friday night, however, there was no debate. Strictly a quarterback, Bounds was 7 of 12 passing for 155 yards and three touchdowns in the blowout win. He also had 62 yards on 15 carries.

"We came out looking to get us a big win," he said. "We were motivated and had our head on right. Me being a senior, all the guys look up to me, and I just tried my best to lead them."

His season started about as well as it could, leading the Blue Devils on an 11-play, 89-yard scoring drive in their very first possession. Bounds carried three times for 27 yards and completed 3 of 3 passes for 47 yards and a touchdown - of seven yards to senior running back James Washington - on the drive.

Water Valley finished, unofficially, with 287 yards of total offense.

"Everybody's expecting us to be a high-powered team this year," Bounds said. "We just came out and executed everything today. I'm proud of everybody."

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