November 3, 2010

Alford focused on attending college

Anthony Alford is a very gifted athlete -- no one has questioned his ability on the field. Multiple scouts have indicated that Alford is a potential top 100 pick in the 2012 MLB Draft, and according to the same sources, certain teams have him slotted even higher.

The 2012 graduate is also the quarterback of his Petal, Miss., team, where he's racked up four verbal scholarship offers midway through his junior year. A seven-figure contract could potentially stare Alford in the face, but the 6-foot-1, 205-pound player indicates his desire to attend college is greater than some would believe.

"I want to go to college and play football and baseball," Alford stated. "That's what it's going to come down to. Whoever lets me play football and baseball. I really want to go to college"

Tennessee and Southern Miss recently joined Ole Miss and Mississippi State as schools that have extended a verbal offer. Alford noted LSU and Arkansas are "really interested," also Auburn and Alabama have shown increasing interest of late.

Alford was scheduled to visit Mississippi State several weeks after he visited Ole Miss for the Rebels' home opener.

"I started to go, but I didn't get to make it. I think I'm going to go to their next home game," Alford said of Mississippi State, a campus he's seen before. "Oxford's got a lot of stuff around and Starkville is... out there, nothing is really around it."

In late September, the two-sport star informed that he would like to compete in the SEC and live "not too far away from home."

Alford has noticed Ole Miss' transition into a read-option offensive attack, and it's something he likes.

"I like it -- a lot. I see how they build the offense around the type of quarterback they have, and what all kind of ways they use the quarterback," Alford said.

Alford has accumulated over 1,200 rushing yards and 1,200 passing yards to go with 30 touchdowns (13 passing, 17 rushing). Most recently, Alford won Mississippi Player of the Week honors for his performance in Petal's win over George County. Alford ran for 143 yards and two touchdowns, and passed for 152 yards and two more touchdowns. Petal is now 8-2 on the season and is the No. 1 seed in 6A football's region four.

When asked which sport he likes more than the other, Alford wrestled with his answer before he provided a diplomatic reply.

"That's a good question," Alford said. "It would depend on which (sport) I could go further in.

"To be honest with you, it's really too early for me to say right now, so I don't know. I'm going to wait. Right now I'm really focused on college.
I'm not focused on the draft or (anything) like that."

Alford served as a pitcher and outfielder for Team Mississippi this past summer, where he helped Mississippi to a 5-5 record, with a win over Guatemala -- a game in which Alford went 2-for-2 at the plate and pitched a scoreless inning.

"Baseball," Alford said of which sport he fell in love with first. "I started playing baseball first. I didn't start playing football until around fourth or fifth grade. I've been playing baseball since I was six years old and I've loved the sport ever since."

Alford has "no favorites or anything like that," and plans to carefully weigh his options in coming months.

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