Jon Andy Scott's path leads to Ole Miss

For a long time Jon Andy Scott has wanted to attend Ole Miss and play baseball. Starting next fall, he'll get to do both.

The 6-foot-4, 220-pound left-handed pitcher from Booneville is currently enrolled at Northeast Mississippi Community College and pitching for the Tigers. It's been a long road to get to this point.

Scott had Tommy John surgery on his left arm after his high school career in June, 2007. He had experienced elbow pain since the spring before, when he was a high school junior. He rehabbed to try to get it well but couldn't. Surgery was basically his only option if he was to pitch effectively again.

He headed to Mississippi State in August, 2007, to rehab and be a part of the Bulldog baseball team. Not long after arriving, he decided to head back to Booneville, attend Northeast, and rehab there.

In a sense, he was simply following his heart.

"I wanted to go to Ole Miss if I got the chance," Scott said.

Scott got that chance earlier this fall when the Rebel coaches told him they wanted him to join their team. They'd kept up with him and had seen him pitch for the Jackson 96ers this past summer.

"Coach (Carl) Lafferty watched me pitch (in a tournament with the 96ers) at Delta State, and he talked to my family," said Scott, who was also the quarterback for the Booneville football team in high school. "Things just went from there."

Derek Topik, coach of the 96ers, was a key factor in Scott's progress.

"He was one of the biggest reasons," Scott said of the fact that his name was out there. "He told some people about me."

Ole Miss was listening. So were some other schools, like Memphis, Arkansas State, Troy, and West Virginia.

This year Scott, who has a fast ball, slider, and changeup in his arsenal, will play for Coach Kent Farris' Northeast ballclub. Scott calls his slider "more of a hard breaking ball."

In a recent fall tournament at a junior college all-star showcase event, Scott threw 90-91 mph, likely the best he had thrown and felt since his junior year of high school.

Through the past few grueling years mentally and physically, the oldest son of Ray and Wendy Scott wasn't sure how things would all turn out. But he knew how to handle it. Hard work, commitment, and staying true to his dreams.

"I prayed about it and knew that if it was meant to be, then it was meant to be," said Scott, who will be a sophomore in eligibility next fall when he arrives in Oxford - his younger brother, Jake, plans to attend Ole Miss next fall as a freshman.

"I knew I had to battle back as hard as I could," Scott continued. "I'll get the chance to be where I always wanted to be. I'm happy they (Ole Miss coaches) are giving me a chance."

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