May 18, 2010

Rebels land first commitment of 2011 class

Ever since Matt Hall transferred from Arkansas to Ole Miss, his younger brother, Mitch Hall has been a regular visitor to Oxford.

And each time Ole Miss offensive line coach Mike Markuson has seen the younger Hall, his face has beamed.

On Tuesday, following Markuson's visit to Hall's hometown of Russellville, Ark., the 6-foot-6, 330-pound offensive tackle gave the Rebels' coach news worth smiling about.

Hall committed to Ole Miss Tuesday, choosing the Rebels over Missouri and others. In so doing, he became the first prospect to publicly commit to become a part of Ole Miss' 2011 signing class.

"(Markuson) was overjoyed," Hall said. "He didn't see it happening today. I called him after practice and told him I was going to come play for him. He was excited."

Hall said his brother's presence at Ole Miss was a huge factor. Matt Hall played two seasons at Arkansas before leaving Fayetteville. He'll sit out the 2010 season due to the NCAA's transfer rules before having two more years of eligibility in 2011 and 2012.

"That honestly played a really big part in it," Mitch Hall said. "Me and Matt have always been close, and I have known Coach (Houston) Nutt and Coach Markuson ever since they started recruiting Matt. They just make college football a lot of fun."

Playing on the same offensive line with his brother, Mitch Hall said, is "really going to make the experience a whole lot better, I think. When things are going bad and getting tough, I'll have him to talk to."

Mitch Hall said his older brother has had "nothing but good things" to say about Ole Miss since his transfer. "He said the school itself is really tough, but I've always been good in school, so it seems like for me, it's going to be a good choice. I know I'll get a good education and I'll have a blast playing for Ole Miss."

Hall, who will likely be one of the most highly-ranked prospects in Arkansas this season, had given serious consideration to Missouri. In the end, however, the family ties and the familiarity with Ole Miss was too much.

"It was difficult," Hall said. "I really had grown close to some of the coaches (at Missouri), but honestly, it's just going to help me out in the long run. It's not going to be as stressful now in my senior season.

"Some of my friends are like, 'Why are you going there? They're not going to win?' I tell them they don't know what they're talking about. They're good coaches. They're going to find their groove. They'll get to another bowl game, if not to the championship."

Hall said he didn't anticipate taking any other visits this summer or this fall.

"I think I'm done," Hall said. "I'm pretty set solid on Ole Miss right now."

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