Mississippi State, Ole Miss get big wins on signing day
It was a wild and eventful signing day on Wednesday as the Early Signing Period kicked off. From unexpected commitment flips to surprising announcements, signing day certainly had it all.
The state of Mississippi had some notable wins on the recruiting trail. Both Mississippi State and Ole Miss received NLIs that allowed each coaching staff to breathe a sigh of relief and celeberate with excitement.
Two signings, however, were more important than others for the two programs.
MISSISSIPPI STATE SECURES TOP TARGET
Four-star safety Isaac Smith was the top target for Mississippi State in the 2023 recruiting cycle. The Bulldogs prioritized the Rivals250 defensive back for months before closing with his signature on Wednesday. It marked as a marquee win on the trail for head coach Zach Arnett, who abruptly took over earlier this month.
"He’s a tremendous football player. I think we have the perfect position on defense for him," Arnett said during his signing day press conference. "There were quite a few cowbells ringing in the football building when his paperwork came through."
Smith, an Ole Miss legacy, is an UA All-American selection and proved to be a difference-making talent on the high school level. As an early-enrollee, he has a legitimate opportunity to carve out a significant role for the Bulldogs as a true freshman.
PERKINS LOCKS-IN WITH REBELS
Suntarine Perkins is one of the most freakish defensive prospects in America. At 6-3 and 220 pounds, Perkins has a big frame with great length to complement his sideline-to-sideline quickness and overall playmaking ability. There was a reason why Lane Kiffin and Ole Miss had to fend off Nick Saban and Alabama until pen hit paper.
Perkins impacted the game in a huge way on both sides of the ball. He capped-off his prep career with a monster performance in the state championship game with Kiffin in the building.
"That was one of the most impressive games I have seen on film or in person," Kiffin said on Wednesday.
Although Perkins was already committed, his signing gave Ole Miss a win on the trail. There was thought that the All-American linebacker would wait until February to sign, and the Crimson Tide provided the biggest threat to the Rebels.
In the end, the Rebels were able to close out Perkins' recruitment and add an elite talent to the roster.