When it was all said and done on Wednesday, five colleges, both in and out of state, got signatures from eight West Point High School seniors to play football in the fall.
The class includes Mario Virges (East Mississippi Community College), Tez Lane (Northeast Mississippi Community College), Freddie Reed (University of North Alabama), Lyndon Johnson (Holmes Community College), Ed Brown (Coastal Carolina), Eric Lemus (East Mississippi Community College), Tre’ Bennett (Holmes Community College) and Terence ‘T.J.’ Minor (East Mississippi Community College).
On hand at West Point High School’s library on Wednesday morning were scores of family members and the student-athletes’ longtime head coach Chris Chambless.
“Signing Day around here is always a great day,” Chambless said after the festivities were complete. “You know that these kids are going to go represent you and your school at various places.”
Two of those places will be out-of-state in 2012.
Brown and Reed both signed with Division-I programs on Wednesday, with Brown inking with Coastal Carolina, a playoff team in 2012 and Reed going to a former Gulf South Conference powerhouse and now D-I school North Alabama.
“Those are two schools that are going to be surprised and excited about the caliber of players those kids are,” Chambless said.
The other six will stay in state, going to a variety of community colleges.
Lane, who dominated as the team’s quarterback this past season, chose to go to NMCC next fall.
“I’m going to do what I have to do to be a successful man in life,” Lane said. “I’m going to go get my grades.”
Lemus was the team’s kicker and punter all season, and he says he hopes to be EMCC’s special teams leader for the next two years.
Virges posed for pictures with papers containing a Northeast Mississippi logo, but later in the morning, the senior defensive standout changed his mind and switched to EMCC.
Wrapping up the signing class for EMCC is Minor.
Bennett and Johnson will go further out of the area to Holmes Community College to play for a rebuilding Bulldog program that should contend with the players the Green Wave program is supplying it.