It is unusual for a player to start on the varsity team during his whole high
school career from 9th- 12th grade, and it is very unusual for a recruit to
grab the starting job on the varsity team in Jr High, but that is exactly what
the two way player out of Benton Aca did.
"I have been starting since 8th grade," added Ben Beckwith, with an
even more suprising fact. "Both ways. I have been starting both ways since
Last season the 6' 4", 295 pound lineman collected 97 tackles at defensive
end. He also started at offensive tackle, kicked on kick offs, punted, and kicked
field goals for Benton Aca. And just for good measures, he had 94 rushing yards
on 7 carries. Did he also sell popcorn in the consession stands?
"No, but I would have if they needed me to (laugh). Hey, I just love to
play football. What ever they need for me to do, they know they can count on
What are his strengths on the field?
"Everybody tells me I am pretty quick for a 300 pound guy. I run a 5.1
forty, which is good. They say my strong point is my quick feet in pass blocking."
The 2008 campaign saw him earn All-County Defensive MVP, All-District, and Defensive
Player of the Year in his Conference. But it is not on defense where most project
Beckwith to play on the next level.
"I play tackle, but I think they like me for offensive guard. That is what
most of them are telling me."
What is going on with Ben's recruitment?
"I went to Ole Miss' Jr Day, and I got invited to LSU's on the same day
but I went to Ole Miss. MSU sent their defensive back coach to our school, and
he wants me to come to their Jr Day on Saturday and come over to their senior
camp. Auburn and LSU offered me to come to their Jr Day and camps. Colorado
and LSU sent me a letter last week wanting me to come to their next Jr Days.
There are really a lot of schools involved right now."
Ben had a good experience at the Ole Miss Jr Day.
"It was a great experience. They treated me real good. They showed me everything.
I like the environment up there. They seen to have everything going in the right
direction. They are talking National Championships around there. I also liked
the academic part of it. They are going to make sure you get your degree. I
just hope to have a chance to play up there. That was my dream school growing
up. Playing in the SEC, and it is just a school I grew up loving. I just hope
it all works out."
Beckwith knows that he also has to separate the fan from recruiting when it comes
to his recruitment.
"I would not rule out any school. If I get an opportunity from somewhere
else that is a better offer, then I will go there. It will all come down to
who gives me the best opporunity."
The Benton Aca left Jr Day at Ole Miss with a couple of things on his mind.
"I just liked the intensity of their coaches. They were hosting a group
of seniors for their official visits on the same day they had us (Jr Day prospects)
up there, and it was wild with everythingt that was going on that day. Their
coaches are so into it up there. It was cool watching how everything worked.
My position coach, Mike Markuson, took me into the film room. He howed me what
they do during practices, and it seems like that they have the right coaches
in place to get the best out of you and get you to the next level. I have to
say their coaches impressed me the most."
What did the Ole Miss coaches say to Ben before he left.
"They told me I have decent size. They said I look good at the position
I am going into. They thought I looked the right size for offensive guard. I
hope that means they will keep me on their short list. I am just hoping it works
out. You never know when it comes down to it, if someone is going to offer you
or not. Sometimes it gets real wishy washy."
What is going on with Mississippi State?
"They want me to come over for Jr day. I like their new coaches they got.
I am into keeping up with everyone on the internet to see what kind of staff and
fans everyone has. I am a football fanatic. I think they are trying to to change
the culture over there. I did not like their old staff, but the new one has impressed
"Their environment is one of the greatest places to play in. They live and
breathe LSU football down there. You walk out of that tunnel every Saturday night,
and you have to have so much adreline rushing through your body. I can not even
imagine what that would be like. It is like a dream environment to play in. It
has always been a dream of mine to play for LSU or play against them."
Anything else going on, recruiting wise?
"I have not heard much about Auburn's new staff, but they want me to come
over there. I have never visited USM, but they want me to come over. I am just
now starting to hear a lot from Colorado, and I hope to get up there one day
to check it out."