Joel Ross, the 6-foot, 310-pound defensive tackle from Vanderbilt Catholic High School in Houma, La., has helped lead his team to a perfect 5-0 start with 30 tackles and two sacks.
Ross says he still has six scholarship offers and continues to favor Ole Miss slightly over Oklahoma State, Arkansas and Oklahoma. He says the Rebels are recruiting him the hardest. "They call me regularly and are the most consistent with sending personal handwritten letters and stuff," Ross said. "They tell me that I'd be able to play early and that they can really see me playing for them. They have the best defensive line coach (Ryan Nielsen) in the country and he really knows what he's talking about."
Ross also says that although Ole Miss is currently 1-4, he's seeing improvement. "They played Florida really tight and have been looking pretty good," he said. "They just haven't been winning the close ones."
He says he hasn't set up any official visits yet and doesn't plan to until after his football season. "Everything will come together after my season," he said. "Right now I just want to focus on my team and we are doing really well so I want to keep my mind on football."
Although the Sooners offered Ross several months ago, he admits that they haven't contacted him recently. "I still get letters from them, but they aren't calling me. The only other school that calls pretty regularly is Oklahoma State. Arkansas called me once in September and that's it. I like Arkansas and they are usually a pretty good team, but they seem to be in a slump right now."
The other schools that have offered Ross are Grambling and McNeese.
He reports a 2.5 core GPA and a 14 ACT, which he is retaking on Oct. 27.