National 100 member takes in OM Spring game

Melvin Ray (WR, Tallahassee, FL) - The North Florida Christian standout strutted his stuff at the combine in Jacksonville earlier this spring.

He was measured in at 6' 3", 199 and ran a 4.53 forty with a 36 1/2" vertical.

It is no wonder that schools like LSU, Maryland, Ole Miss, LSU, Alabama, and Florida State had thrown their name into the offer hat. It looks like two more schools have joined the list of pursuers.

"Arizona State and Georgia offered me this month too. Coach Lubick at Arizona State was actually recruiting me while he was at Ole Miss, so he was real familiar with me, and Georgia was just waiting on my film," added the very well spoken Melvin Ray.

Last season Ray averaged over 21 yards a catch for Chiles and was named 1st Team All Big Ben (District), All-State, and Conference.

"I think definitely I am strong off of the line. Not many guys can jam me off of the line of scrimmage. Probably my biggest strength is my strength and speed. That and my quickness and hands."

Ray still has room for improvement.

"I need more upper body strength. Even though I am noted as a physical receiver, I am no where near where I can be."

The 206 pounder just got back in from Ole Miss this past Saturday.

"I went up to their Spring game with my two parents, my younger brother and sister. Normally it is just my parents who come with me, but my little brother and sister wanted to see what Ole Miss was all about too."

What were their thoughts?

"My family loved it actually. The city is kind of small, real small. We did not expect that. But once we got to the campus, it blew us a way. It caught us off guard. It was a lot more than what we expected."

What was Melvin expecting before he saw the campus?

"I was expecting it to be an average school with average facilities. See, I have already been to FSU and Florida, and they are top notch schools. I did not think Ole Miss would be anywhere comparable to those schools, but they can hang with those guys campus wise, facility wise, coaches wise, and players wise. I just did not know it was that high quality at Ole Miss."

What did Ray observe at the scrimmage?

"I talked to Coach Freeze before the game. He told me about the QB that transferred in from Texas. Coach Freeze said we could grow up together at Ole Miss since he is just a freshman. So basically I was just studying what kind of game he had. And I tell you, right now, he is as good as any QB I have seen at any school, Florida, FSU, anywhere. He is that good. That really stood out to me. I know if I go there, I will have one of the best QB's in the country to get me the ball. I also wanted to see what their tendencies were on offense, and they throw the ball a lot. That was nice to see. The last thing I focused on was their RB's. I do not care what kind of QB you are, if you do not have good RB's, it will not work. And they had some real good RB's. #25 (Cordera Eason), I looked him up in the program, and he is just a freshman. That man can play. He was running over and around anybody who got in his way. He is big time. I was just impressed with everything at Ole Miss. The facilities, coaches, the young players on their team, their offensive philosophy, campus, just everything. I really can see myself playing for Ole Miss."

The Ole Miss coaches were certainly excited to have Melvin in town.

"They were very excited about me being there. You know how recruiting goes, they will tell you anything, but I was just one of hundreds (of recruits) at their game. They showed me a lot of interest, genuine interest. Every coach, from Coach O (Orgeron), to every assistant on their staff came up to me and shook my hand and told me how good it was to see me there. Me and Coach Corrao hung out for a while. He is the coach that is recruiting me. I have a real good relationship with Coach Corrao. He is more like a friend to me more than a coach. We just have that bond."

The players at Ole Miss also had an effect on Ray.

"After the game was over, I got a chance to talk to the players. They like to have a good time, which is good. I wanted to see what their relationship was like with their coaches. They are like a big family. It was fun to watch how the coaches and players interacted with each other. It is just a great place to be outside of football."

Where does Ole Miss now stand with Melvin?

"Even before I went on my trip, they were in my Top 5 with Alabama, FSU, Florida, and Georgia. Right now, I am really open. My first focus was on Florida, Florida State, and Georgia, but now Ole Miss is right in there with them. I have been a big Georgia fan since I was a child, but that visit to Ole Miss helped them a lot in the way I think of Ole Miss. I will definitely take one of my official visits to Ole Miss. I was just as impressed with them as I was with the other schools I visited because I am looking more at how I would fit in outside of football, and I just felt at peace at Ole Miss."

Ray reports a 2.8 GPA / 960 SAT.

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