Rod Woodson names Ole Miss his leader

Everyone is familiar with the Rod Woodson that starred for the Pittsburgh Steelers for a number of years before putting in a few seasons with the Raiders and Ravens. The future Hall of Famer was one of the best, if not the best, defensive back in the NFL for over a decade.

But there is another defensive back named Rod Woodson from Olive Branch (MS) that could be the Magnolia state's top prospect this upcoming season.

"I get a lot of people asking me about the other Rod Woodson," added the 5' 11", 205 pound strong safety. "But we are two different players, in my opinion. He was more of fineness corner who turned into a pass covering safety in his later days. I am more of a physical player who loves to make the big hit. Once I wrap you up, you are going down. I rarely, if ever, miss a tackle."

Tackling has been no problem for Rod Woodson as he had a team high 140 tackles as a junior and also tallied 128 tackles as a sophomore. Rod was named to the 1st Team All-State (class 5A) squad for his own the field accomplishments.

"The thing I am trying to work on the most this offseason is my speed. I run about a 4.45 right now, but I want to get that down in the 4.3's before I go off to college."

Rod Woodson

Olive Branch has made it to the North Half Finals the three past years but has not been able to get past the eventual state champs, South Panola, in any of the three seasons. What will it take to hurdle the Tigers this go around?

"We have to get stronger in the weight room. Last year, I do not think we worked as hard as we could have in the weight room. South Panola is always stronger than us, as a whole, so we have to get our guys stronger this year."

Woodson took in Jr Day at Ole Miss on Saturday and came away impressed.

"I liked their weight room and how they practiced. I also like their coaches a lot. I get a long with their coaches real good. We talk all of the time. I just like their school. They are my leader right now."

Was this Rod's first visit to Ole Miss?

"No, I have been down there a few times for some football games. But it was a little bit better than I was expecting. I just like how they do things. I thought it would be like the other schools I have visited. I like how they have their academics set up, with all of those tutors. I did not know they had that many tutors. I went to MSU for Jr Day too. And they had some tutors too, but not like at Ole Miss. They got anything you need at Ole Miss. And the equipment room is a whole lot different than MSU's. They did not have near as much stuff as Ole Miss'. Ole Miss has everything. But I did like MSU's weight room. It was nice too."

The football staff at Ole Miss has also built a tight bond with Rod.

"I talk with Coach Nix and Vaughn all of the time. We talk a lot. I just like how they coach and treat their players. I can also relate real good to them. It is like talking to one of your boys. When we were at the scrimmage Saturday, I was really focusing in on their strong safety, Jamarca Sanford. I like how he plays. He is real physical like me. Coach Vaughn was real patient with everyone but he still got on them at the same time. I like how he coaches. And I know Jamarca is graduating this year, so I have a chance to step right in and make an immediate impact if I go there. That's a big plus for me."

Woodson actually received another SEC scholarship offer while he was at Ole Miss' Jr Day.

"Auburn offered me Saturday. They sent word with QB Clint Wilson that I had an offer. He went down there to Auburn's Jr Day, and they told him that I had an offer and for me to call them. They offered me."

With offers from Michigan, Ole Miss, MSU, and Auburn, who could be next?

"Probably Arkansas or Vandy. They seem to be pretty interested in me. They write a lot and call my coach a lot."

Which colleges is Rod the most interested in right now?

"Ole Miss, but I want to see what Auburn is all about. I have not been up there yet, and I want to check out LSU too."

Who would Woodson like to see recruit him harder?

"Florida. I just want to go down there and check it out. I have always liked Florida since I was a little kid."

Woodson plans to attend the Under Armour/ combine in New Orleans on April 12th.

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