MONTGOMERY, AL - The Mississippi team unable to win its second Mississippi/Alabama All-star game in a row as the Alabama squad took home the 2016 trophy with 25-14 win. But the experience was still well worth it for the Mississippians as they got to play with their competitors for a change.
"It was fun man," said Grenada (MS) safety C.J. Avery. "At practice we got the chance to be with each other and compete every day and it was fun to do that. There's a lot of guys in Mississippi that are some ballers and I had a privilege of playing with these guys."
"It felt good because there's a lot of good people on the same team," said Hattiesburg (MS) senior wide receiver Jordan Murphy. "A lot of people wanted to see how Mississippi would play with a lot of great people on the same team."
Murphy had a game-high seven receptions for 78 yards and Bassfield's Ron Thompson had one catch and run for 17 yards. Kylin Hill of Columbus won MVP honors for Mississippi with 92 rushing yards and one touchdown.
The Mississippi team out-gained Alabama in total yards 229 to 179 but they couldn't finish off drives.
"For these players to come together from all over the state from different schools coming together and playing, it was a great experience for them," said Mississippi head coach Todd Mangum of Wayne County High School. "No we did not win the game but I know these young men are going to take something that they learned this week, not football-wise, but a lot of things they learned this week and apply it to their lives. And they're going to be better players and better people."
"We wanted to win just as bad," Avery said. "We wanted to keep the trophy in Mississippi but we didn't. I feel like the guys next year will do it."
Alabama now leads the all-time series 22-8 but it was still a good showing for Mississippi in 2016. 15 of the 40 Mississippi players invited to Montgomery have already committed to Division I programs.