MS-AL Notebook: Oxford’s Metcalf turns in MVP performance
Published 6:01 am Sunday, December 13, 2015
HATTIESBURG — D.K. Metcalf’s last prep football game in his home state was a memorable one.
In a Mississippi-Alabama All-Star Game that featured some of the top talent in the Southeast, Oxford’s senior wideout stood out among the best, hauling in five catches for 151 yards and two scores to help Mississippi snap a seven-game losing streak in the series with a 28-21 win.
Metcalf’s performance earned him team co-MVP honors with fellow wideout A.J. Brown of Starkville.
“It’s all a blessing for (the game) to be in Mississippi for the first time and we just come out with the win,” Metcalf said. “We had a great team.”
Metcalf, an Ole Miss commit, helped get momentum back on Mississippi’s side after an early pick-six by Alabama MVP Ben Davis put Mississippi in a 7-0 hole three plays in. Metcalf caught a hitch, shed the tackle attempts of P.J. Hall and Lyndell Wilson, broke away from Jeawon Taylor and was in the end zone 69 yards later to even things up.
Mississippi trailed just once the rest of the day. Metcalf sealed Alabama’s fate with a 32-yard touchdown catch to give his team a two-touchdown lead with 6:54 left in the game.
“Kept my feet running, and it just turned out to be a great play,” Metcalf said of his first score. “This game was all about who made the most plays, and we made the most plays at the end of the day and brought the trophy back.”
Lafayette senior linebacker Quin Jones tied for the team lead with seven tackles, an important outing for one of the Commodores’ top defenders over the last three seasons to know he could perform against the best.
“This game was way faster, and these guys are going to Florida, Ole Miss, Alabama, Auburn,” Jones said. “This is some of the top talent you’re going to see in the nation, and just knowing I could make plays with them and make tackles, it feels good to me.”
The 5-foot-11 Jones has scholarship offers from nearly every junior college in the state as well as Louisiana-Monroe, but he said he will “wait it out.”
“With my play in this game, I hope I done picked up a couple more (offers),” he said.
Lafayette running back Tyrell Price was Mississippi’s top rusher with 31 yards on eight carries.
Lafayette offensive lineman Eli Johnson spent most of his prep career playing tackle, but the Ole Miss commit moved inside this week to get a head start on his future.
Johnson started for Mississippi at center and played most of the game there. The 6-foot-3, 295-pound Johnson, who’s being recruited as a center, said he was “excited about the opportunity” to play on the interior, though just five days of practice didn’t make for much preparation at the new position.
“It’s just one of those deals where I haven’t gotten many live reps this week at it,” Johnson said. “I would’ve liked it if it could’ve been where I could’ve gotten reps at it all week, but that’s not how it played out.”
Johnson, an early enrollee, said he’s not considering any other schools. He will begin classes at Ole Miss in January.
“It’s all Ole Miss right now for sure,” he said.
Oxford quarterback Jack Abraham missed Saturday’s game after fracturing his collarbone on the next to last play of the MHSAA Class 5A state title loss last Friday.
Abraham, who won’t have to have surgery, suffered the injury while diving short of the front pylon on a scramble with Oxford trailing Wayne County 45-41 with 4 seconds left. It was the first of back-to-back controversial calls as Metcalf was also ruled short of the goal line to end the game.
Abraham will wear a sling for the next four to six weeks, he said, to let the bone heal on its own.
“Hopefully four,” Abraham said.