Derrick Brown announced where he’ll take his five official visits a little over a week ago, and one school stuck out in particular — Mississippi State.
Brown, a 5-star defensive tackle from Lanier High School, included Mississippi State among normal SEC powerhouses such as UGA, Tennessee, Alabama and Auburn.
The AJC traveled to Lanier on Monday to find out why Brown was making the trip to Starkville.
“That’s where my parents found themselves growing up,” Brown told the AJC. “I want to see for myself what they found so special about the college. I’m looking forward to going back to where I’m from and checking out the campus.”
His parents, Martha and James Brown, graduated from Mississippi State and Derrick grew up in Starkville for the first 18 months of his life.
But Derrick’s decision to take an official visit back to his hometown wasn’t his parents decision, it was strictly their son’s.
“Believe me, Derrick has a mind of his own,” his mom said with laughter. “I would feel great if he went to Mississippi State because he would be near relatives, but this is Derrick’s life and our thing is to help guide him toward his decision. We want to help guide him toward his own path.”
Said dad: “Our thing is having an opportunity to play there where he was born and our relatives don’t live that far from the college puts him in a good position to play in front of family.”
Derrick named UGA his favorite early on in the recruiting process, but backed off of that. He says he is considering all of the schools he is taking an official visits to. He won’t name a leader, but he does have a message for all of those people asking about where he will play college football next year.
“We’re all just going to have to wait until National Signing Day,” he laughed.