November 30, 2009

Sanders entertains Ole Miss, MSU coaches Sunday

Vincent Sanders saw two Egg Bowl games this weekend.

Mississippi State won the first one, knocking off Ole Miss, 41-27, at Scott Field in Starkville.

The winner of the second Egg Bowl match-up, played in front of a much smaller crowd in Sanders' home in Macon, Miss., is still undetermined.

Sanders, a four-star wide receiver from Noxubee County High School, entertained coaches from both Ole Miss and Mississippi State on Sunday, one day after checking out the between-the-lines action between the two rivals.

"It was pretty exciting," Sanders said of the Egg Bowl game Saturday. "I was watching to see how I'd fit in. I was watching (former teammate/Ole Miss freshman wide receiver Patrick Patterson to see how they used him. I think I'd fit in good to both (offenses), to be honest.

"State ran the ball a lot Saturday. I think the offenses of both are 50-50 pass and run. They were just running the ball against Ole Miss. Normally Ole Miss runs the ball with (Dexter) McCluster, but they passed the ball a lot because it was working for them. I think if Mississippi State gets a quarterback who can throw, they're going to throw the ball a lot."

Sanders said he visited with Patterson late Saturday.

"He came home," Sanders said. "I talked to him for a few minutes. He hasn't said anything bad. He was smiling after the game. I asked him what happened. He said he didn't really know. He hasn't said anything bad about his experiences at Ole Miss."

On Sunday, Ole Miss wide receivers coach Ron Dickerson and running backs coach Derrick Nix made the 1 -hour trip from Oxford to Macon to visit with Sanders, a 6-foot-3, 182-pounder who is ranked by Rivals.com as the No. 2 player in Mississippi, the No. 12 wide receiver prospect in the nation and the country's No. 102 overall prospect.

"Basically they were talking to my mom and sister," Sanders said. "I've talked to them a lot of times. I was just sitting back and observing. They were telling me about the opportunities I'd have since they're losing Shay Hodge and McCluster. They said I could be their main guy."

Several Mississippi State coaches, including Tony Hughes and Greg Knox, made the short jaunt over to Macon as well. Interestingly, part of the Bulldogs' sales pitch to Sanders revolved around Ole Miss' use of Patterson this season. The former four-star standout played in 11 games for the Rebels, catching 12 passes for 180 yards and a touchdown.

"They told me they plan on lining me up on the backside and giving me the ball more than 12 times," Sanders said, adding that he has followed Patterson's involvement in the Ole Miss with interest "because during the summer, I heard a lot about Pat moving up the depth chart. But when he was in the game, he was in the game a lot but they didn't get him the ball. I was wondering about that. I know there's probably more to it, but I was looking at that. …(Ole Miss' coaches) said Shay Hodge was their main guy, he and McCluster. I guess that was the reason. They helped them win ballgames, so that's whose hands they put it in."

Regardless, Patterson's statistics this season, Sanders said Sunday night, "won't be an issue."

Patterson said he has scheduled an official visit to Ole Miss for Jan. 15. He'll visit Mississippi State officially one week later. He said Sunday he will definitely take official visits to West Virginia and Florida State as well, though he hasn't scheduled either trip. Sanders also has offers from Alabama, Arkansas, Southern Mississippi, Tennessee and Texas Tech.

"Everybody's still the same," Sanders said. "Everybody's that's still recruiting me has a chance. I'm going to see who comes to my house and see what they have to offer before I start narrowing them down."

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