June 8, 2006

Orgeron makes progress with Sherrod

Ole Miss head coach has surprised a lot of critics with last season's top 15 national recruiting classes; he has followed that up with 14 early commitments for 2007. The thing that Orgeron has stressed during his tenure as the Rebels head of recruiting, it's all about building relationships.

One relationship that Coach Orgeron and staff continue to build is one of the best offensive linemen in the Magnolia state. Derrick Sherrod, of Caledonia is one of the Rebels top targets, but with family connections to MSU, most realize it isn't going to be an easy task.

Sherrod and his father made the trip to Oxford for an unofficial visit Tuesday to give the elder Sherrod a chance to get familiar with the Ole Miss football program.

"The visit went really, really well," Sherrod said Wednesday night. "Actually it went much better than I ever expected. I just figured that we would go and look around, they spent half a day with us visiting in offices and giving us the VIP tour and treatment."

Sherrod's older brother Desmond goes to school at the Rebels archrivals MSU so this trip was actually only the second time that the elder Sherrod got a chance to visit the Oxford campus. When asked if his father was impressed with the campus, Sherrod excitement level on the phone rose.

"Oh man, he loved it there," Sherrod said. "He couldn't believe how great their facilities were, how nice their campus was and he couldn't stop talking about how much he liked it there all the way home. He was overwhelmed with all the new stuff, how pretty the campus was and he really liked the coaching staff."

Coach Orgeron left Mr. Sherrod with a good impression as well.

"Dad thought Coach Orgeron was a really a humble man who knows what he is talking about when it comes to football," Sherrod said. "He really liked Coach Orgeron a lot and was impressed with his intensity and passion for the program."

While Sherrod still maintains that he still wide open when it comes to naming favorites, he does admit that Ole Miss helped it chances with the visit.

"Yeah you can say that Ole Miss stock rose quite a bit after this visit," Sherrod said. "The more familiar I get with their coaching staff the more I like them. I'm still very wide open and haven't narrowed down a favorites list yet."

Sherrod has picked up more offers over the spring and summer, now holding 11 official offers from such schools as Notre Dame, Michigan, Ole Miss, Miami, Florida, Houston, Southern Mississippi, Arkansas State, Louisville, Alcorn and State.

Sherrod earlier in the month attended camp at Florida and thoroughly enjoyed his time in the sunshine state.

"It was a great trip and great experience," Sherrod said. "A very nice campus, very big to the point of being overwhelming but I loved it. Their coaches are great and really seemed to like me a lot."

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