Massie makes splash by signing with Mississippi

CHATHAM — In early December, more than 200 assistant coaches from colleges throughout the eastern United States gathered on the tiny campus of Hargrave Military Academy. Their mission: To take a closer look at some of the top young players in the country during the Hargrave postgrad football program’s annual winter workout.

Just one head coach from a Division I program made the trip that day: the University of Mississippi’s Houston Nutt. And on Wednesday morning, Nutt’s personal touch paid off when the Rebels landed one of the most coveted prizes in the 2009 recruiting class, Bobby Massie. The 6-foot-8, 330-pound offensive lineman was ranked as the No. 1 prep school player in the nation by Rivals.com.

Sitting in the front of a packed Hargrave auditorium shortly after 11 a.m., Massie injected some drama into the proceedings, slowly lifting an Alabama cap off the table in front of him, raising it to his head and then abruptly tossing it over his shoulder before donning an Ole Miss hat instead.

“Coach Nutt, I like everything he’s doing down there with that program,” Massie said. “It’s a place I want to be — (win the) SEC championship, make a run for the national championship.”

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