Mississippi Scoreboard highlights a Mississippian or someone with Mississippi ties who plays or coaches SEC football at Ole Miss, another at Mississippi State and another at an out-of-state SEC school each week.
By Robert Wilson
WEST POINT ALUMNUS AND MSU OFFENSIVE TACKLE SCOTT LASHLEY PLAYS AGAINST FORMER TEAM
West Point High alumnus and Mississippi State redshirt senior offensive right tackle Scott Lashley will be playing against his former team when MSU plays host to defending national champion and No. 5 ranked Alabama Saturday at 6 p.m. on ESPN.
The 6-foot-7, 315-pound Lashley was at Alabama for four seasons and played in 19 games as a backup right tackle in his last three seasons after being redshirted his first year.
Lashley – who has undergraduate degree in human environmental science from Alabama and is pursuing a master’s degree in workforce education leadership at MSU – has started every game this season for the Bulldogs. Lashley (No. 78) has helped protect MSU sophomore quarterback Will Rogers, who is ranked No. 1 in the nation in completions per game, No. 2 in completion percentage and No. 2 in passing yards per game.
“Scott is a really talented guy, and he’s got really good feet,” MSU coach Mike Leach said. “He moves well for a guy of his size. He is a massive guy and a pretty smart guy. He needs to stay relaxed and focus on the job at hand and then he is pretty good.”
Lashley was the No. 5 ranked player in Mississippi and No. 16 ranked offensive lineman in the country by 247 Sports as a senior at West Point. He played in the Mississippi/Alabama All-Star Game.
NORTHEAST MISSISSIPPI CC ALUMNUS SAM WILLIAMS MAKES GAME WINNING PLAY FOR OLE MISS
Northeast Mississippi Community College and Ole Miss senior defensive end Sam Williams put pressure on Arkansas quarterback K.J. Williams to alter his pass and throw an incompletion on a two-point conversion on the last play of the game to give Ole Miss a 52-51 victory.
The 6-foot-4, 265-pound Williams, who took advantage of an additional senior year due to the pandemic, leads the SEC and ranks No. 8 in the nation with 1.0 sacks per game. He has five sacks for 15 yards. Williams (No. 7) also has 18 tackles, five for loss, 2 forced fumbles, 2 quarterback hurries, 1 fumble recovery and 1 pass breakup this season.
Williams started six games and had 40 tackles, a team-high eight for loss, and four sacks last season. He had eight starts at outside linebacker and had 37 tackles, 9.5 for loss, one interception and five hurries as a junior.
A first-team junior college All-American at Northeast Mississippi CC, Williams was rated the No. 7 juco prospect and No. 3 weak side defensive end in the country by 247 Sports as a sophomore. He had 75 tackles, 28.5 tackles for loss, 17.5 sacks, four forced fumbles and four pass breakups as a sophomore.
No. 13 Ole Miss, 4-1, plays at Tennessee, 4-2, Saturday at 6:30 p.m. on SEC Network.
MADISON CENTRAL ALUMNUS AND TENNESSEE WIDE RECEIVER JIMMY HOLIDAY ALSO PLAYING SPECIAL TEAMS FOR VOLS
Madison Central alumnus and Tennessee sophomore Jimmy Holiday is still waiting turn at the wide receiver position – he isn’t in the top seven on the three-receiver depth chart as of today – but is contributing on special teams. The 6-foot, 200-pound Holiday is one of the fastest players on the team – he runs a 4.38 40 – and could make a big play on special teams when Tennessee plays host to Ole Miss Saturday. Holiday had a fumble recovery on a South Carolina punt return late in the game to seal a Tennessee victory last season. Holiday (No. 6) is getting some playing time at receiver and made his first career catch in the fourth quarter against Tennessee Tech.
Tennessee wide receiver coach Kodi Burns has been in Holiday’s shoes, switching from quarterback to wide receiver. Holiday was one of the top quarterbacks in Mississippi at Madison Central, but voluntarily moved to wide receiver to get on the field faster at Tennessee last fall. Holiday was fifth on the quarterback depth chart to open fall practice when he moved to receiver.
Burns started seven games at quarterback at Auburn in 2008 before being moved to receiver.
“I was a quarterback my entire life,” Burn said. “That’s what I did. That’s who I was. I had never caught a pass in my life. Once I was a junior in college, I actually ended up moving to wide receiver. That transition for me was not that difficult because I understood coverages. I understood the run game. I understood the pass game. I understood leverage. I understood what defenses were trying to take away and do. That made me more knowledgeable as a player. I like to teach the wide receivers the position as a quarterback because I think it makes you a better wide-out when you truly understand the game as a quarterback and not just what you do. Understanding the big picture makes you a better player overall.”
Holiday passed for 3,507 yards and 37 touchdowns and ran for 3,568 yards and 51 TDs in three seasons at Madison Central. He led the Jaguars to a 9-3 record and Class 6A state playoffs as a senior in 2019. He graduated early and enrolled at Tennessee in the spring of 2020.