The countdown to the Mississippi State Bulldogs’ 2018 football season continues. With just eight days remaining, it’s time to spotlight former Bulldogs wide receiver, #8 Fred Ross.
Ross played at State from 2013-2016. He was an explosive receiver during his time at MSU, and arguably one of the greatest receivers in school history.
The 6-foot-2, 205-pound playmaker played his high-school ball at John Tyler High School in Tyler, Texas. In his senior season for the Lions, Ross hauled in 86 catches for 1,594 yards and 21 touchdowns and helped the Lions advance to the Texas 4A state semifinals, where he caught 10 passes for 132 yards and a touchdown in the 57-53 loss to Guyer as John Tyler finished with a 13-2 record.
He was Rated as a four-star prospect by Rivals, Scout, 247Sports and ESPN, and was named to the ESPN 300 as the No. 22 prospect in the state of Texas.
Following a decorated senior season, Ross was named a First-Team Parade All-American. He committed to Oklahoma State on February 25, 2012, but a year later, Ross made the decision instead to sign with MSU.
As a Bulldog, Ross was a two-time all-SEC selection, and one of Dak Prescott’s favorite targets.
Ross appeared in 11 games for the Bulldogs during his first season in Starkville. He finished his freshman campaign with nine catches for 115 yards.
The following year, Ross became a bigger piece to the Bulldog’s offense, as he racked up 30 catches for 489 yards and five touchdowns, becoming one of Prescott’s favorite targets.
Ross then had a breakout junior season. Playing all 13 games, he had 88 catches for 1,007 and five touchdowns. He also added a rushing touchdown on two carries for 42 yards. On the year, he set school records for receptions (88), 100-yard games (5) and consecutive 100-yard receiving games (4). He became first MSU receiver to earn first-team All-SEC honors since Eric Moulds in 1995 and just the second 1,000-yard receiver in school history and the first since Mardye McDole in 1978. The highlight of Ross’ junior season was his incredible one-handed catch against Arkansas.
He didn’t slow down his senior season, even without Prescott. He earned All-SEC honors for the second straight year, as he led the conference in touchdown catches (12) and ranked second in catches (72) and sixth in receiving yards (917). On October 22, in a game against Kentucky, Ross became the Bulldogs’ career leader in receptions.
He is the school record holder in consecutive games with a reception (35), receptions (199), 100-yard receiving games (10) and receiving yards (2,528).
After Mississippi State
After an incredible career at MSU, Ross signed with the Carolina Panthers as an undrafted free agent. He spent his rookie season in 2017 on the injured reserve. He was placed on injured reserve on Sept. 1 after suffering a high ankle sprain.