ELLISVILLE, MS (WDAM) - Ellisville knew all along.
Now the Southeastern Conference and the rest of the country is learning what kind of running back Scottie Phillips is.
"He got it,” said Cory Reynolds, who coached Phillips at South Jones. “He understood the big picture and he understands it now." "You don't find a better kid, hard worker," said South Jones head coach Roger Satcher. "What he's doing at Ole Miss doesn't surprise me,” said Jones College head coach Steve Buckley. “We told everybody in the country what kind of back we thought he was."
The Ole Miss junior ranks third in the SEC with 637 rushing yards through six games – leading the conference with seven yards per carry.
"In my mind, I feel like I compete with the best,” Phillips said. “It's something I had in mind for me. I trust myself and my abilities. I go out and practice and work hard every day and prepare."
Phillips’ success this season has been years in the making. He rushed for over 1,600 yards as a senior at South Jones. He followed that up with back-to-back 1,000-plus yard seasons at Jones County Junior College.
"He was one of ‘em that you always knew the way he worked, the way he approached things, the way he had a passion for things that if he ever had that opportunity and had that chance that he would succeed," Reynolds said.
"The ones who are doing that are the ones who are good kids, who work hard and will stay the course,” Satcher said.
Phillips has taken his opportunity and ran with it. He’s even drawn comparisons to the Saints’ Mark Ingram from Alabama head coach Nick Saban.
All of his coaches will say the same thing. The only thing more impressive about Phillips scoring touchdowns is his actions after he crosses the end zone.
“He was real quick to lift his linemen up, lift his other teammates up,” Reynolds said. “That just showed a little bit of selflessness on his part. He knew he was good.”
"Scottie, number one, he's a character young man,” Buckley said. “It starts in his head and his heart. "Scottie never asked for more, never more carries, never more touches. He's always the first one to meetings, never says a word. He’s a yessir, no sir kid."
Reserved off the field, but aggressive once you get a football in his hands. As Phillips continues rumbling for the Rebels, he influences others along the way.
“Inspiring,” said South Jones senior running back Vekelion Campbell. “Let’s me know that I can do the same thing. All of us can do the same thing.”