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Signing day in full swing across Southern Crescent

Photo by Dennis Thomas
Lovejoy players Nathaniel Norwood and Tyrell Brown signed with Appalachian State on National Signing Day on Wednesday.

Photo by Dennis Thomas Lovejoy players Nathaniel Norwood and Tyrell Brown signed with Appalachian State on National Signing Day on Wednesday.

HAMPTON – In what coach Al Hughes called the largest signing class that he can remember, Lovejoy High School saw 19 athletes sign letters of intent to play college football Wednesday during National Signing Day.

Headlining the class was tight end Arshad Jackson who signed with Ole Miss after being formerly committed to Auburn and pursued heavily by Florida State. Jackson joins Grayson High defensive end and the nation’s No. 1 high school player Robert Ndkemdiche in helping to formulate one of the strongest recruiting classes in the SEC.

“I just feel like with such a big recruiting class, we really have a chance to make a difference in SEC football,” Jackson said. “Having (Ndkemdiche) sign played a bit of a factor, but mostly I just felt like I had a comfortable relationship with the coaches and players there.”

JuMichael Ramos, who switched his commitment Sunday from Georgia Tech to NC State, made his final choice official Wednesday as he donned a red North Carolina State baseball cap while signing his letter of intent paperwork.

Nose tackle/linebacker Nathaniel Norwood switched his longtime commitment from Jacksonville State to Appalachian State, joining defensive back Tyrell Brown. Defensive end Zane Fields signed with South Carolina State despite getting heavy attention from Indiana.

Meanwhile, other Wildcats honored there longstanding commitments with their schools. Quarterback Alejandro Bennifield, who is headed to the Tennessee-Chattanooga, said he was excited to begin preparations to make as immediate an impact with UTC as possible.

“They’ve only got two quarterbacks, so I’m hoping to come in as second string and try to compete for that starting job as soon as I can,” Bennifield said.

All-state running back Travis Custis stayed true to his April 2012 commitment to Georgia Tech, despite being hotly pursued by Tennessee, Wisconsin and Florida.

“In the end, I stayed pretty much solid with Georgia Tech because they kept giving me 100 percent all the way through,” Custis said. “To get to this point feels like a dream come true.”

At Luella, defensive end Tevin Jones signed his pledge to play at Georgia State University next fall.

Check back with the Clayton News Daily throughout the day for more Signing Day news and updates.