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Slam Dunk in the ‘Sip as Kermit Davis, Rebels add three on National Signing Day

Slam Dunk in the ‘Sip as Kermit Davis, Rebels add three on National Signing Day

OXFORD, Miss. — It was a slam dunk in the ‘Sip for Ole Miss men’s basketball on the first day of the early national signing period. Head coach Kermit Davis signed Daeshun Ruffin, Grant Slatten, and James White, a trio of outstanding prospects for the 2021-22 season.

Davis and his coaching staff continue to add to the strong platform they’re building in Oxford, attracting more and more of the nation’s top prospects who are deciding to #ComeToTheSip.

For the second consecutive year, the Rebels have not only put together a top class but also signed their highest-ranked prospect in program history — this season, that happens to be the best player out of Mississippi, Daeshun Ruffin (No. 21 on ESPN’s Top 100), while a year ago they signed Matthew Murrell (No. 39 per ESPN and 247Sports Composite).

Daeshun Ruffin

Ruffin is considered the No. 4 PG in the nation according to 247Sports, and Coach Davis couldn’t be more thrilled to keep the Jackson, Miss. native in his home state. “Getting the very best player in the state of Mississippi is always a priority for us,” said Davis.

“Daeshun is a dynamic guard that scores at all three levels. He’s a proven winner, leading Callaway (High School) to a state championship in 2020. Daeshun plays for one of the very best coaches in our state, David Sanders, and comes from a fantastic family.”

Ruffin may live a few hours away from Oxford, but he will be right at home playing in The Pavilion. The four-star prospect made his mark before he ever inked with the Rebels, leading Callaway to a 2020 5A state championship and accounting for 33 points — on the hardwood of The Pavilion. Ruffin comes to Ole Miss as the Mississippi Gatorade Player of the Year and a First-Team All-State player.

The Rebel Rouser, as we like to call him, brings his electrifying talent to Davis’ team, averaging 26.9 points per game (ppg) and 4.9 rebounds per game (rpg) throughout the season, and having scored at least 30 points in 11 games.

If that isn’t enough, Ruffin has led Callaway to three district titles and three state appearances. Here are a few more ‘rousing Ruffin’ stats to get you giddy over his arrival: During his freshman season, he scored 19.8 ppg to complement his 4.0 assists per game (apg) and 3.7 rpg. As a sophomore, he averaged 25.0 ppg, 4.6 rpg, 4.2 apg and 2.1 steals per game.

Grant Slatten

Talk about coming out of the gate strong….the Rebels also signed the No. 7 prospect out of Tennessee, Grant Slatten. Coach Davis says the 6-foot-5 three-star guard out of White County High School is “one of the best shooters in this ’21 class.”

In his three years, he has notched 1,808 points and has been named to both the 3AAA All-Region and 6AAA All-District teams in each of those three years.

Slatten averaged 26.8 ppg, 5.5 rpg and 3.9 apg in his junior season, one where he was also named to the All-State team by the Tennessee Sports Writers Association. He not only brings basketball athleticism to the Rebels, but as a multi-sport athlete in baseball and tennis will bring an interesting dynamic to the court.
“His dad, Bruce, has been considered one of the best high school coaches in Tennessee for many years. Grant will have a fantastic senior year,” Davis said.

James White

Ole Miss closed out Signing Day with another outstanding 6-foot-5 skill guard in James White out of Georgia. The preseason All-State athlete ranks No. 9 in the state according to 247Sports. The Conyers native accounted for 724 points (24.1 ppg) in his junior season, alone, and is one of the top five scorers in his home state, averaging at least 20 points in 24 of his 30 games.

White has already broken the 30-point mark six times to date and helped lead his Heritage High School team to the Sweet 16 in the postseason and tallied a record-high 41 points again Alcovy, who eventually became the state champs.

“James White has a great skill level as a long, athletic guard that is one of the very best scorers in the state of Georgia,” said Davis. “He loves ball, enjoys being in the gym and is set for a fantastic senior year. James has an unbelievable support system around him.”

After leading the region in scoring his junior season, White was named first team all-state and first team-all region.

Outstanding signing day

With this trio of signees, there is no doubt Coach Davis is building a strong program for years to come. While the Rebel faithful will have to wait a year before they get to see these young guns, it will be worth the wait.

“It’s an outstanding day for Ole Miss Basketball with the signing of three very talented players,” said Davis Wednesday.

They are terrific offensive players with the ability to score the ball at all levels. All three young men come from unbelievable families and support systems, and we can’t wait to get them to Oxford this summer! Our fan base will have a fun time following all of these guys during their senior years.

Kermit Davis

2020-21 season set to tip off soon

This year’s edition of Rebel hoops is slated to begin in just a couple of weeks. Ole Miss opens up at home with the Justin Reed Classic set for Nov. 25-27. The Rebels will play three games over three days, hosting Arkansas State, Central Arkansas, and Jackson State.

Stay tuned for an electric season, Rebs!

Hotty Toddy!

About The Author

Lee Ann Herring-Olvedo

Lee Ann is the Director of Recruiting for The Rebel Walk. She is a veteran SEC sports journalist and NFL content writer. She is also the Sr. Editor for MESPORTS digital. Herring-Olvedo is a Brown University graduate who loves good cigars, good games, and a smooth glass of bourbon — not necessarily in that order.

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