Six in Mind

Ray Buchanan, Jr.

Ray Buchanan, Jr., added another school to his already crowded offer sheet Monday.

A defensive back, he earned his third scholarship from a Southeastern Conference school, Ole Miss joining Mississippi State and Arkansas. And with it, Ole Miss, Buchanan said, has moved into his "top five or six" schools.

"I've been waiting for Ole Miss to come in and offer me," Buchanan, Jr., said. "I'm definitely going to come and try to visit them sometime this summer."

Buchanan, Jr., said his relationship with Ole Miss began with a visit by offensive line coach Mike Markuson to his school -- Peachtree Ridge in Suwanee, Ga. -- for spring practices. His highlight film was recently shown to defensive coordinator Tyrone Nix, who jumped at the opportunity to extend a scholarship offer.

"Last time I spoke to them was yesterday, but when we first started talking was spring practice. I think it was the o-line coach (Mike Markuson), he came and visited the campus for spring practice to meet with me and a couple other of my teammates. He said he looked forward to talking to me in the future," Buchanan, Jr., said.


Ray Buchanan, Jr.
File Photo
"I talked to the recruiting coordinator; I think it was this weekend. I showed him my highlight film and stuff, and he showed it to Coach Nix. They were really impressed with what they saw, so they said go ahead and offer him."

The 5-foot-10, 170-pound Buchanan, Jr., was already somewhat familiar with Ole Miss. "I know it's a really good school," he said, further naming the football environment and facilities as positives.

Ole Miss has climbed to the top of his list, with Mississippi State, Arkansas, Illinois, Purdue and Southern Miss among his other favorites. Each of those schools, he said, has offered.

"Arkansas and Mississippi State and Ole Miss, those are three big SEC schools that offered me," he said. "I kind of want to play in the SEC. That's always been like a big goal for me, to play in the SEC. But then there are some Big-10 schools that I really have interest in also."

Buchanan, Jr., is a member of the recruiting class of 2012, and rated a three-star recruit by Scout.com. He named comfort level, his relationship with a coaching staff and "most of all," playing time, as the primary factors in his recruitment.

He plans on making a final decision in the fall.

"I was thinking about doing it sometime mid-summer," he said, "but since more schools that I wanted offers from have come to me with offers, I'm probably going to take a couple official visits at the beginning of the season. That's probably when I'm going to make my decision."

Buchanan, Jr., is the son of former NFL defensive back Ray Buchanan. The elder Buchanan played 12 seasons in the NFL with the Indianapolis Colts, Atlanta Falcons and Oakland Raiders. Buchanan, Jr., is listed as a safety by Scout.com, but considers himself a cornerback at the next level.

"I think my skills at corner are real, real sharp right now. I've been working with my dad since January," he said. "I think my coverage skills, like playing man coverage and pressing, those are probably going to be my strengths."

Buchanan, Jr., played in only five games last season due to injury. He recorded 30 tackles, 17 assisted tackles, seven pass breakups, one interception and one forced fumble.

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