After a 24 hour span in which Alabama owned the entire city of Starkville (even took Bully away at one point) Dan Mullen and this staff were able to rebound in a major way to finish out the Class of 2016 with two huge commits today. Jeffery Simmons and Kobe Jones both announced they were headed to Starkville other offers from several, several other prominent programs in the area. They headline a small class, but as Coach Mullen said in his press conference today, with such a young team there really is only so many spots available.
Offensive Impact Players
For a unit that is losing both Dak Prescott and De'Runnya Wilson among others, it was crucial to add some potential playmakers to this class. Jamal Couch, a 6-foot-5 ATH from Phenix City, AL who Dan Mullen stated today was going to come in and play WR is fully capable of filling the void. With his height ability to high point the ball, he has a chance to see the field early as well as build an early rapport with the new QB as well.
In the SEC, games are won and lost in the trenches. Mississippi State is building up the offensive line arguably as well ass anyone else in the conference, and this class is no different. Adding impact blockers such as Stewart Reese is vitally important. at 6-foot-6 and 365 pounds, Reese has an elite body frame, and he could line up at either G or T when fall camp comes around.
Defensive Impact Players
Where do we start on the defensive side of the ball when it comes to the players we project to make the most impact. It would be borderline disrespectful to start anywhere other then Jeffery Simmons. When Dan Mullen brings out the silly string, that's how you know he's excited about you coming on board. Simmons is one of the top 15 or so players nationally in this class, and was hands down the top player in the state. He has a chance to line up on the defensive line from the moment he steps on the field, and Coach Mullen would love nothing more then for that to happen.
After Simmons and the rest of the commitments in the front seven, comes the secondary, which received several athletic signees. Korey Charles and Cam Dantzler highlight the secondary class. Charles, a three-star from North Florida Christian HS, has the old-school size of a corner at 5-foot-11 and about 175 pounds, and in his film it becomes clear quickly he has the instincts to be able to play both sides of the ball, it is really all up to what Coach Mullen and this staff choose to do with him.
As for Cam, he has the size schools covet today at defensive back. Dantzler is 6-foot-2 and about 170 pounds, which is an extremely similar build to one of the best CB's in recent State history; Jonathan Banks. He uses his length to his advantage, and his coverage skills are something that should have State fans thrilled to see him get on campus. Dantzler has a great feel for where the ball is, and he seems to take the right angle the majority of the time. Cam also has game changing moves in the open-field, and I would not be shocked to see him on special teams in year one.
Overall, this class fills a ton of major needs, from adding to the defensive line, maintaining a steady presence in-state, and lastly signing a class that will help lighten the load on the new QB. Dan Mullen salvaged what could have been a disastrous 48-hour period for the Bulldogs if they were unable to land Kobe Jones and Jeffery Simmons today. Landing a top-thirty class is huge, and while I expect better in 2017, this class continues to set up this program (and staff) with the talent needed to compete week in and week out in the gauntlet that is the SEC West.