March 1, 2009

Jackson, Miss., LB has 'fantastic' visit

Patrick Black just wants a chance to play college football in the Southeastern Conference.

After his visit to Ole Miss for the Rebels' Junior Day on Saturday, he's more encouraged than ever that his chance to fulfill that lifelong dream just might happen.

Black, a 6-foot-1, 210-pound linebacker from Jackson (Forest Hill), Miss., was one of more than 60 prospects to brave frigid temperatures and steady precipitation to make the trip to Oxford. On Sunday, Black said he was glad he endured the weather to check out the Rebels.

"It was fantastic," Black said. "The coaches spoke and introduced themselves, then we went with our position coach and talked about the defense. We got a tour of the IPF (indoor practice facility), the (FedEx) academic center, the locker room, the equipment room, the training room and everything. Then we ate and headed home."

Before he left, Black got a chance to visit with Ole Miss coach Houston Nutt.

"I congratulated him on turning around his organization," Black said. "He's made them into a wonderful team."

Black does not yet have any scholarship offers, but he's confident several are coming, including one from Ole Miss.

"(Ole Miss defensive coordinator Tyrone Nix) told us that he's looking for someone who can play," Black said. "He said he's looking for speed, heart and determination."

Black said he plans to show the Rebels' staff all of that when he makes a stop at Ole Miss' camp in June. Black, who recorded 114 tackles, five quarterback sacks, one interception, four forced fumbles, three blocked punts, two blocked field goals and two defensive touchdowns last season, said he's also hearing Auburn, Mississippi State and Southern Mississippi.

"I just know I want to play in the SEC," Black said. "Whoever's giving me a chance to show my skills and play their defense, I'll take it. I just want a chance."

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