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
LAUREL HIGH AND EAST MISSISSIPPI CC ALUMNUS DONTARIO DRUMMOND SETS OLE MISS RECEIVING RECORD FOR EGG BOWL
Laurel High and East Mississippi Community College alumnus Dontario Drummond did what no Ole Miss wide receiver has ever done in the Egg Bowl.
Even though the senior wide receiver didn’t score a touchdown in No. 9 Ole Miss’ 31-21 victory over Mississippi State Thursday night in Starkville, Drummond caught a career-high and Egg Bowl Ole Miss record 13 catches for 133 yards in the game.
Drummond, Ole Miss’ top receiver this season, keep Ole Miss drives alive. Seven of his catches resulted in first downs.
He had four catches for 20 yards – two for first downs – in Ole Miss’ scoring drive, which put the Rebels ahead 24-6 with 11 minutes, 17 seconds to play in the fourth quarter.
Drummond leads Ole Miss with 53 catches for 786 yards and eight TDs this season. He missed one game, against Liberty, this season.
Only one other player in Egg Bowl history on both teams had more catches than Drummond. Mississippi State’s David Smith caught 14 passes for 194 yards in 1969.
Drummond was one catch short of tying the school record for most catches in a game. Elijah Moore (2020 vs. Vanderbilt), A.J. Brown (2017 vs. Louisiana-Lafayette) and Laquon Treadwell (2015 vs. Memphis) are tied for the school record with 14 catches each.
Drummond has three 100-yard games this season and four in his career. He had a career-high 177 yards in the season opener against Louisville and 107 yards in the second game against Austin Peay.
Drummond was second behind Moore last season with 25 catches for 417 yards and seven TDs. Drummond caught two passes for 84 yards and a 48-yard TD against Mississippi State in the Egg Bowl victory. And without Moore in the bowl game, Drummond led the team with six catches for a career-high 110 yards and one TD in the win over Indiana.
Drummond was a first-team junior college All-American at East Mississippi Community College and helped EMCC to the national championship in 2017 and a national runner-up finish in 2018. He is the career leader in receptions and receiving yards at EMCC. He was rated as the fourth best receiving prospect in the country by 247 Sports coming out of EMCC. He picked Ole Miss over Arkansas, Kansas, Colorado State and Arkansas State.
Drummond produced 3,474 all-purpose yards during his high school career at Laurel High and had 1,568 receiving yards and 17 TDs as a senior. He played football, basketball and baseball at Laurel and helped his team win state titles in football and basketball.
LAUREL HIGH ALUMNUS AND MISSISSIPPI STATE’S CHARLES CROSS WINS KENT HULL TROPHY
Laurel High alumnus and Mississippi State redshirt sophomore Charles Cross was named the winner of the Kent Hull Trophy this week.
The award is named for the best college offensive lineman in Mississippi and named after Greenwood High and Mississippi State alumnus and former NFL offensive lineman, the late Kent Hull, who played in four Super Bowls for the Buffalo Bills.
Cross started all 12 games at left tackle for MSU this season and ranks fifth among Southeastern Conference offensive linemen with an 86.4 grade by Pro Football Focus (PFF) going into Thursday’s Egg Bowl. He holds the second-highest pass blocking grade in the SEC at 86.2 and is fifth in run blocking at 85.4.
The 6-foot-5, 310-pound Cross is the fifth Bulldog to win the Kent Hull Trophy since its inception in 2013 joining Gabe Jackson (2013), Justin Senior (2016), Martinas Rankin (2017) and Elgton Jenkins (2018).
Cross has appeared in 25 career games and made 22 starts. He was named Freshman All-SEC by the league’s coaches last year and has been selected SEC Offensive Lineman of the Week twice this season.
Cross was rated the No. 1 recruit in Mississippi by 247 Sports and Rivals and ranked No. 8 nationally as offensive lineman as a senior at Laurel High. He played in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl and in the Mississippi/Alabama All-Star Game.
GULFORT HIGH AND OLE MISS ALUMNUS MATT LUKE BIG PART OF NO. 1 GEORGIA’S SUCCESS
Gulfport High and Ole Miss alumnus and former Ole Miss head and assistant coach Matt Luke is a big part of the success of No. 1 Georgia as the Bulldogs play their last regular season game at Georgia Tech Saturday at 11 a.m. on ABC.
Luke is in his second season as Georgia’s offensive line coach. The Bulldogs are fifth in the SEC in rushing with 201 yards per game.
Luke, joined the Georgia staff in December of 2019, after serving the previous two years as head coach at Ole Miss. Luke has mentored 42 all conference selections at stops at Ole Miss, Duke, Tennessee, and Murray State. He was head coach and co-offensive coordinator at Ole Miss and offensive coordinator at Duke. In his first year at Ole Miss, Luke took over for Hugh Freeze as interim head coach right before fall practice and led the Rebels to a 6-6 record, winning three of the last four games, including the Egg Bowl win at Mississippi State. While an offensive line coach at Ole Miss, Luke was ranked eighth among recruiters in 2016 by 247 Sports. He also coached tight ends at Ole Miss.
Luke started 33 games at center for Ole Miss from 1995-1998 and was the team captain in 1998 and led Ole Miss to a 7-5 season and a win over Texas Tech in the Independence Bowl.
Luke’s father, Tommy, was a defensive back at Ole Miss from 1964-66 and his brother, Tom, played quarterback at Ole Miss from 1989-91. Tom has been Ole Miss assistant athletic director for player development since 2013. He was also Ole Miss’ coordinator for football operations from 2004-2005.