Here is SBLive’s 2020 preseason all-state first team for Mississippi high school football. The statewide team spans all Mississippi high school classifications and was compiled by SBLive reporter Tyler Cleveland.
Players were selected based on last season’s performance, offseason observations and conversations with coaches.
PRESEASON ALL-STATE FOOTBALL FIRST TEAM
QB – Ty Keyes – Senior – Taylorsville
Keyes could end up being the state’s all-time leader in career passing yards after averaging better than 4,000 yards a season in his first three seasons. He is committed to Tulane. (Ty Keyes feature photo by Keith Warren)
RB – Jarquez Hunter, Senior, Neshoba Central
He could have made this list as a defensive back, but Hunter is arguably the top running back prospect in the state after averaging 2,000 yards and 28 touchdowns over the past two seasons.
WR – Deion Smith, Senior, Jackson Academy
Smith, the top ranked recruit for Mississippi’s class of 2021, transferred from Provine after the Rams canceled their season along with the rest of Jackson Public Schools. That’s bad news for the rest of the MAIS.
WR – Antonio Harmon, Senior, Kosciusko
Harmon has averaged 19.8 yards per reception in his first three seasons of varsity football and is a huge contributor on the defensive side at corner as well. He holds offers from all three of Mississippi’s FBS teams, plus Georgia, LSU and Texas.
WR – Isaiah Brevard, Senior, Southaven
Brevard was hurt most of his junior season and only played in three games, but that didn’t keep the college recruiters from beating down his door trying to sign the 6-foot-4, 200-pound ball-catching machine.
TE – Jalen Shead, Senior, Olive Branch
Shead already overcame his biggest challenge of his senior season at Olive Branch when he chose to accept a scholarship offer from reigning national championship LSU over Nick Saban and Alabama.
OL – Makylan Pounders, Senior, Byhalia
Pounders is ranked as a 3-star prospect and the No. 51 overall guard in the country for the class of 2021, according to 247sports.com. The 14th-ranked recruit in Mississippi for the class of 2021, Pounders committed to Mississippi State back in April.
OL – Gabe Cavazos, Senior, Lake Cormorant
Cavazos is rated as a 3-star prospect and the No. 102-ranked tackle in the nation for the class of 2021. The No. 20 overall recruit for Mississippi this year committed to Mississippi State in early August.
OL – Reid Gavin, Senior, South Jones
South Jones’ splendid 6-foot-4, 310-pound tackle Reid Gavin makes most of the defenders he faces a non-factor, and that’s helped him garner some accolades off the field. Gavin, rated as a 3-star prospect by 247sports.com, is also ranked as the No. 165 tackle in the nation for the class of 2021.
OL – Bryson Hurst, Junior, Gautier
At 6-foot-6 and 320 pounds, Hurst already holds offers from Ole Miss, Mississippi State, Auburn, Florida State and Missouri, among others.
OL – Zyrus Craft, Junior, Mt. Olive
Craft recently transferred from Magee to Mt. Olive. The junior already holds offers from Ole Miss, Mississippi State, Jackson State and Alcorn headed into his junior season.
DL – Cole Daniels, Senior, Sumrall
Daniels is strong as an ox and put together a solid junior season with 60 total tackles, including 13 in the opposing backfield, with two sacks. The 3-star prospect is currently rated as the No. 29 overall player for the class of 2021 in Mississippi and the 102nd-rated interior defensive lineman in the country, according to 247sports. He committed to South Alabama back on April 1.
DL – Thurman Rayborn, Senior, Horn Lake
As a junior, Rayborn recorded 12 tackles behind the line and put together a highlight reel that is 7.5 minutes of pure domination. He’s currently rated as the No. 34 overall prospect for the class of 2021 and the 117th best defensive lineman in the country, according to 247sports.
DL – Jaheim Oatis, Junior, Columbia
Oatis was on college recruiters’ radars long before he entered high school. The 4-star prospect posted a photo of himself with Alabama Crimson Tide coach Nick Saban just before his 8th grade season. Rated as the No. 2 overall prospect for the class of 2022 in Mississippi, Oatis still holds offers from LSU, Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi State and Ole Miss, among others.
DL – Ty Cooper, Senior, Louisville
As a junior, Cooper was credited with 63 total tackles, including a whopping 21 stops behind the line of scrimmage with nine sacks. He holds offers from Mississippi State, Ole Miss, Southern Miss, Colorado and Tennessee, among others.
LB – Joseph Perryman, Senior, Madison Central
Perryman, one half of Madison Central’s splendid twin linebackers, recorded 62 tackles as a junior a year ago, earning him offers from the likes of Louisville and Georgia Tech.
LB – Josiah Perryman, Senior, Madison Central
The only thing better for Madison Central than having one linebacker with Perryman’s talent is having two of them.
LB – Stone Blanton, Junior, Madison-Ridgeland Academy
ESPN ranks him as the 5th overall linebacker prospect in the country for 2022, and the college recruiters seem to agree – Blanton holds offers from half of the SEC and ACC schools.
DB – M.J. Daniels, Senior, George County
Daniels holds offers from at least 12 different schools, including from Georgia, Texas A&M and Auburn, as well as all three of Mississippi’s FBS schools. He de-committed from Ole Miss in June and, as of early September, he remains uncommitted.
DB – Justin Walley, Senior, D’Iberville
The rising senior has been starting since he was a freshman and has taken on a bigger role for the Warriors each season. Walley has six career interceptions in 33 games and has been credited with 163 tackles, including 74 last season. He also forced seven fumbles and blocked two punts and a field goal last season.
DB – Brendan Toles, Senior, Lafayette
In 11 games last year, Toles recorded one interception and was credited with 52 total stops. He was instrumental in helping the Commodores to a 9-2 regular season record and a playoff win over Holmes County Central. The No. 150 overall cornerback prospect in the country (according to 247sports.com) recently announced he was switching his commitment from Louisiana Tech to Mississippi State.
DB – Khamauri Rogers, Junior, Holmes County
Rogers caused all kinds of problems for opposing receivers in his sophomore season. He was credited with breaking up 22 passes and recorded four interceptions to go along with 46 tackles. With more than 27 offers, it seems like every school in the country is vying for Rogers’ services at the next level. He’s already committed to LSU