Scout Rating: ****
Scout Rank: 10
Size: 6-5, 215
Hometown: (Greenwood HS) Greenwood, MS
Projected position at OM: Tight End
Accolades: HIGH SCHOOL: Selected to play in the 2014 Offense-Defense All-American Bowl … Rated a 4-star prospect and the 10th-best tight end in the country by Scout.com, which also lists him as the eighth-best prospect in Mississippi… Played in the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Game and was named Mississippi MVP after catching seven passes for 125 yards and a touchdown …Epps' performance in the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Game catapulted his recruiting stock to another level. . . Listed No. 8 on The Clarion-Ledger's Targeted 22 list … A first team Class 4A All-State wide receiver by the Mississippi Assocation of Coaches and second team overall All-State pick by The Clarion-Ledger … Also voted Region 3-4A Offensive Player of the Year by the coaches … Hauled in 46 catches for 808 yards and 11 touchdowns his senior season … Caught 45 passes for 500 yards and three TDs as a junior … Coached in high school by Clinton Gatewood … Cousin of former Ole Miss receiver Mario Hill.
Recruiting Competition: Sammie committed to Ole Miss early, but withdrew the commitment – just to make sure – after his stock started rising in January. Auburn and Mississippi State came after him hard, but, in the end, he stuck with the Rebels. Elation among Rebel Nation followed.
Quotable: "Ole Miss stayed with me through thick and thin. Even when I decommitted they told me that I was still their guy. They're like family. When Mississippi State and Auburn offered, Ole Miss just kept telling me I was still their guy and kept calling and kept coming after me. The other schools just offered me, and I didn't hear back from them much again. I knew who really wanted me and who really didn't. Also, Coach (Derrick) Nix had a lot to do with my decision. He's like a father figure for me, really. I know he's older and has a lot of wisdom. Coach Nix is just a great guy, all-around caring person. He told me from day one it was my choice and do what I want to do and not want anybody else wants me to do. Even when I de-committed he told me that. He told me that I had to do what was in my best interest, but at the same time, he kept telling me how much he loved me. He never put any pressure on me, not once, and that meant a lot to me."
Scouting Report: Epps has length, speed and excellent hands. He also has a nice frame to build on. Do not be surprised to look up in the near future and see Epps at 6-5, 240 with wide receiver speed. It is believed he can make an immediate impact on the tight end position, similar to what 2013 freshman Evan Engram did prior to his injury. "Two Engrams" have the Rebel coaches licking their chops. Or could it be "two Epps?"
Coach Hugh Freeze Quote: "Sammie is Evan Engram, only maybe a little bigger and maybe a little faster. We all know the kind of impact Evan had on our team. We expect the same from Sammie. Having both of them on our roster will also allow us to do some things on offense we have been wanting to do – with two tight ends – that we have not been able to do to this point."
Signee Spotlight: Sammie Epps
Scout Rating: ****