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Ole Miss picked up its third commitment for the 2016 class on Tuesday in the form of Oxford, Miss., offensive lineman Eli Johnson.


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Ole Miss didn't have to go far to add to its 2016 recruiting class.

Oxford, Miss., offensive lineman Eli Johnson, who stars for nearby Lafayette County High School, committed to the Rebels on Tuesday, becoming the third commitment for a class that already includes fellow Oxford product DeKaylin Metcalf.

Metcalf is a wide receiver and defensive back for Oxford High School. Johnson, meanwhile, is a 6-foot-3, 285-pound offensive lineman who helped lead the Commodores to the 4A state championship game in his sophomore season.

"Every time I go out there I just feel at home," Johnson said of Ole Miss in a previous interview with Scout.com. "I love all of their coaches, for starters. They treat me like family. I love the atmosphere at their games. Their fans are so passionate. It's live, and it's awesome.


Eli Johnson
File Photo

"(Ole Miss co-offensive coordinator and offensive line) Coach (Matt) Luke and (head) Coach (Hugh) Freeze have bright offensive minds. I just love everything there is about Ole Miss, from their uniforms, facilities, coaches and fans, to their players. I love it all."

Ole Miss finished 7-5 in the second year under Freeze, their second straight season reaching the postseason. The Rebels are headed to the Music City Bowl in Nashville, Tenn.,to face Georgia Tech Dec. 30 at 2:15 p.m. CT.

Ole Miss appealed to Johnson because of its up-tempo offense.

"They have a really explosive offense with a lot of diversity," he said. "They do all kind of different things with their offense. I love it. They play with a lot of passion and explore the defense's weaknesses. I just like their whole program right now. They have everything I'm looking for."

Johnson earned a starting job as a freshman and hasn't missed a game since. He was an all-region selection that season and was named a MaxPreps freshman All-American.

He holds additional offers from Mississippi State (his first offer), Louisiana-Lafayette, Akron and Southeast Louisiana. Florida State, Kentucky, Memphis, Vanderbilt and others showed interest, as well.

"I think run blocking is my biggest thing," Johnson said, when asked to describe his strengths and weaknesses. "I'm strong and really good at moving my feet through contact. I keep my feet churning and have powerful hands. I'm pulling pretty well, although that's not a strength of mine. But I'm getting better at it. Pass protection is getting better, too. I'm moving my feet better and have strong hands. I'm still working in that area, too."


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