Tuesday, January 23, 2007

The Next Powe??

OXFORD — Chris Strong, South Panola High's star linebacker who is expected to sign scholarship papers next month with Ole Miss, has transferred to Genesis One Christian School in Mendenhall.
Strong said he begins classes at the private school Wednesday.
Strong, Mississippi's Mr. Football and the No. 1 prospect on The Clarion-Ledger list of the state's 10 Most Wanted list of recruits, said he is attending the school to help him achieve NCAA initial-eligibility standards for freshmen.
"I'm just trying to get my grades up," said Strong, who decided to transfer to the school two weeks ago. "I've got to do what I've got to do to get eligible for college."
Strong is rated as a four-star prospect on a five-star scale by Rivals.com and Scout.com, national recruiting services that analyze the talents of high school prospects. Rivals ranks him as the 53rd top prospect in the country, regardless of position; Scout ranks him No. 73.Players must meet several criteria to be eligible as a freshman in NCAA Division I. They must graduate from high school, with a grade point average of 2.5 or above in 14 "core classes," such as math, science and English. Additionally, they must score at least 17 on the ACT.A sliding scale exists that allows for eligibility if a player scores lower in one of the areas but higher in another.Darel Thigpen, Genesis One's top administrator, could not be reached today for comment.Genesis One, which has about 225 students in grades K-12, was in the news last spring when it was among dozens of non-traditional schools nationally whose academic reputations were questioned by the NCAA.In July, the NCAA "cleared" Genesis One, along with 21 other schools, authorizing transcripts from Genesis One to be used by athletes seeking initial eligibility for the fall of 2006.On Dec. 22, that list was updated. But 12 schools, including Genesis One, are still listed as being cleared "only for prospects entering college in the fall of 2006, and they are subject to further review."(Clarion Ledger)