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Mississippi: 25 Student-Athletes to Watch in 2015-16

In early October, CBS projected a BCS semifinal game of Mississippi vs. Mississippi State, only to have the best athlete in the state, Laquon Treadwell, tackled just short of the goal line against Auburn to create a fumble and injury that knocked him out for the season.

We ran the Value Add Sports calculations on all returning athletes in the state and emailed 45 sports writers and other experts in Mississippi to help rank the 25 players to watch on a list we will update here.

Great football is not new to Mississippi. The state that produced the best running back in an era when running backs dominated in Walter Payton, and after it went to the pass it produced Brett Favre and the NFL’s greatest receiver in Jerry Rice, who remains the greatest athlete EVER from the state according to the December 23, 2012, Bleacher Report.

Fans can catch great action at Jackson State, the University of Mississippi, Mississippi State, Southern Miss, and Rice’s alma mater of Mississippi Valley State. Here are the top 25 athletes to watch:

  1. Laquon Treadwell, Mississippi Rebels, Foot, Rec
  2. Dak Prescott, Mississippi State Bulldogs, Foot, QB
  3. Laremy Tunsil, Mississippi Rebels, Foot, OLine
  4. Robert Nkemdiche, Mississippi Rebels, Foot, DLine
  5. Malik Newman, Mississippi St., Basket, SG
  6. Chris Jones, Mississippi State Bulldogs, Foot, DLine
  7. Stefan Moody, Mississippi, Basket, SG
  8. Denzel Nkemdiche, Mississippi Rebels, Foot, LB
  9. Sebastian Saiz, Mississippi, Basket, C
  10. Trevor Gilley, Mississippi, Track/Field, 5,000m Run
  11. Nick Mullens, Southern Miss Golden Eagles, Foot, QB
  12. DeKaylin Metcalf, Oxford, MSOxford, football, WR
  13. Derrick Johnson, Southern Miss., Track/Field, 100m Dash
  14. Tamarick Johnson, Jackson State, Track/Field, 200m Dash
  15. Wyatt Short, OleMiss, Baseball, RP
  16. Evan Engram, Mississippi, Foot, Receiver
  17. Ryan Gridley, MississippiState, Baseball, SS
  18. Marquis Haynes, Mississippi, Foot, DE
  19. Benito Jones, Waynesboro, MSWayne County, football, DT
  20. Justin Connor, Sardis, MSNorth Panola, football, RB
  21. De’Runnya Wilson, Mississippi State Bulldogs, Foot, Receiver
  22. Mike Hilton, Mississippi, Foot, LB
  23. Ryan Brown, Mississippi State Bulldogs, Foot, DE
  24. Chip, Armelin, Southern Mississippi, Basketball
  25. Raeford Worsham, Jackson State, Basketball and Jabari Alex, Mississippi Valley State, basketball (tie)

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