McKenzie standout receives offers from USA, USM
When things move fast, McKenzie School junior Nicarius Peterson rarely has trouble keeping up.
On the gridiron, Peterson uses his speed to slice apart opposing defenses.
But recent events have left the speedy wide receiver feeling like he’s running in cement shoes. But he’s not complaining.
The McKenzie standout has received scholarship offers to play football at the University of South Alabama and the University of Southern Mississippi.
“This is all new to me,” Peterson said. “It’s happened so fast that I’m having to adjust to all of it.”
Peterson said South Alabama coaches have told him he would likely play wide receiver for the Jaguars, while Southern Mississippi coaches are recruiting him as an athlete.
While Peterson is flattered by the offers, neither team is likely to get an answer anytime soon.
“It’s hard to try and pick,” Peterson said. “I probably won’t make a decision until sometime (during my senior year).”
McKenzie head coach Miles Brown believes the Jaguars and Golden Eagles are just the first of many schools that will offer the 5-foot-11, 160-pound wide receiver/safety a scholarship.
“Typically once a player gets one offer, the others start to roll in,” Brown said.
Brown said he is confident Peterson can be successful at the next level.
“He has a lot of athletic ability,” he said. “In the last year he has really come into his own, and I think showed that he has the potential to be an asset to any Division I program. He comes from a good family and he’s an honor roll student here at McKenzie. I believe he’ll be successful at the college level, and that there are a lot of team that would be lucky to have him.”
If Peterson does sign with a Division I school he will become just the second Tiger in school history to do so, according to Brown.
Emannuel Johnson signed with Southern Mississippi in 2011 following a standout career at McKenzie.
“I believe it helped to have Emmanuel sign and be successful (at the Division I level),” said Brown, who has been coaching at the school for seven years. “He opened the door, and that’s made some coaches at that level take notice of what we’re doing down here at McKenzie. I think that’s benefited Nicarius, who is going to get a chance to play Division I ball, and I don’t think he’ll be the last player from McKenzie to sign at the Division I level.”