The anticipation for the return of Mississippi State football is at an all-time high. With just just six days until thousands of Bulldog fans pack the stands of Davis Wade Stadium, lets look back at former MSU wide receiver, #6 Donald Gray.
Gray played wide receiver for the Bulldogs from 2015-2017. Hailing from Memphis, Tenn., he played at White Station High School, where he played wide receiver and safety. He was a Four-star recruit by ESPN and one of the top athletes in the state of Tennessee.
He signed with State out of high school in 2013, but had to attend Copiah-Lincoln Community College in Wesson, Miss. instead, where he transitioned to playing just wide receiver. He was the nation’s best juco wide receiver in the 2015 class. He was named a 2014 National Junior College Athletic Association All-American after hauling in 55 catches for 989 yards (eighth in the nation) and 10 touchdowns.
After a year of junior college, Gray signed with MSU on December 17th, 2015, and enrolled on Jan. 12.
Gray was a dynamic playmaker for the Bulldogs. At 5-feet-11, 200-pounds, he was known to have some of the strongest hands in the nation.
Former Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow said, “Donald Gray has the strongest grip in the history of Mississippi State.”
He showed his play-making ability immediately in his first season with MSU. He Played in all 13 games with no starts and caught 21 passes for 386 yards and two touchdowns, which was good for a team-best 18.4 yards per reception.
The big game of his inaugitral season with MSU came in a game in which he had four receptions for a career-best 140 yards and a touchdown in a win over Northwestern State (9/19).
In 2016, Gray was MSU’s second-leading receiver behind Fred Ross. He started all 13 games and caught 41 passes for 709 yards and five touchdowns. He showed his playmaking abilities again, as he was fifth in the Southeastern Conference in yards per catch (17.3), and was one of only two players in the SEC with multiple catches over 70 yards.
His memorable game came on Oct. 29, 2016 when he played one of the best games in MSU history in win a over Samford. He tied the school record for touchdown catches with three and finished with four catches for an incredible 207 yards,
Gray served as a team captain during his senior season in 2017, a year in which he was limited to eight games due to injuries. On the year, he caught 24, which was good for second on the team in receptions, for 214 yards and three touchdowns.
In his career, Gray had 86 catches for 1,309 yards and 10 touchdowns, which is 12th in school history. He earned his undergraduate degree in sociology in December 2016.