Southern Miss signs 19, including NW Rankin’s Baker

Other local signees include Willis, Wright, and Bozeman

Southern Miss signs 19, including NW Rankin's Baker

HATTIESBURG, MS (WLBT) - Dee Baker hopes to be Southern Miss' new touchdown-maker.

Northwest Rankin’s senior running back signed with the Golden Eagles Wednesday. He told WLBT he made up his mind last week while on an official visit to Hattiesburg.

“I went to campus and fell in love with the campus,” said Baker. “I enjoyed the people there. (I) enjoyed the coaches and how they coach.”

Baker added Southern Miss' proximity to his home and family also played a role in his decision to sign with the Golden Eagles.

Southern Miss also signed versatile Velma Jackson star Antavious Willis. Willis' 35 touchdowns were tied for the most scored by any single player this year in Mississippi.

Southern Miss snagged an offensive lineman from Brookhaven high school for the second consecutive recruiting class. Coker Wright signed with the Golden Eagles Wednesday. Brookhaven graduate Trace Clopton earned Conference-USA All-Freshman honors for USM this fall.

Swayze Bozeman may have been lightly recruited coming out of high school, but not after a stellar junior college career at Copiah-Lincoln. The Tri-County Academy graduate signed with Southern Miss Wednesday after earning all-region and all-state honors at linebacker this fall for the Wolves.

Additional Southern Miss signees are:

  • TE Naricuss Driver, Griffin, GA
  • OL Tre Johnson, Orlando, FL - 3-star recruit
  • TE Luke Baker, Naples, FL - 3-star recruit
  • OL Matt Ryals, Purvis, MS
  • OL Louis Smith, D’Iberville, MS - 3-star recruit
  • OL Gerquan Scott, Mobile, AL
  • DL Eriq Kitchen, Batesville, MS - 2-star recruit
  • OL Khalique Washington, Lebanon, PA - 3-star recruit
  • ATH Markel McLaurin, Collins, MS
  • OL Tanner Hawthorne, Peoria, AZ - 3-star recruit
  • DB Khalen Leonard, Houston, TX - 2-star recruit
  • ATH TQ Newsome, Gulfport, MS - 3-star recruit
  • WR Chris Scruggs, Clearwater, FL - 3-star recruit
  • QB Chandler Rogers, Mansfield, TX - 3-star recruit
  • QB Jaden Johnson, Memphis, TN - 3-star recruit

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