Tupelo High School boasts six Clarion-Ledger Dandy Dozen football selections in school history. Let’s take a look at those players since 1989.
1989: Stacy Wilson, DE
Wilson was fortunate enough to be tabbed on the C.L.’s inaugural dozen. He went on to play defensive end at the University of Mississippi. He played four seasons with the Rebels while racking up 68 tackles and two sacks during his 1994 senior season.
1992: Kirk Presley, QB
Presley played football for the Golden Wave in 1991, 1992, and 1993. As a junior quarterback, his 1992 team won 5A North Half, but lost to Moss Point in the championship. In 1993, he led his team back to Jackson and captured the school’s first and only 5A state football title against Hattiesburg. During his senior season, Presley signed a national collegiate letter of intent to play football and baseball at Mississippi State. However, he was chosen #8 overall in the 1993 MLB Draft. He bypassed college and signed a guaranteed $900,000 contract with the New York Mets. He now lives in Tupelo and head coaches the Tupelo 49ers American League baseball team.
1994: Jarious Jackson, QB
Jackson earned three THS letters in football as a quarterback, defensive back, and outside linebacker. He was 1st-Team All-State quarterback as a senior and accounted for 2,100 total offensive yards in 1994. As senior captain, he completed 54-134 passes for 880 yards, seven TDs and seven interceptions. He helped THS to a combined 17-8 record in 1993 and 1994. Jarious also competed in basketball and track at Tupelo.
Jackson was named to prep All-American teams by SuperPrep, Prep Football Report and Bluechip Illustrated. He was ranked 6th nationally among quarterbacks by Bluechip Illustrated and 10th nationally by SuperPrep. He was also one of five quarterbacks named to Super Southern 100 by Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
He went on to attend the University of Notre Dame, where he was a two-year starter and set a school single-season records for passing yards, completions, and attempts as a senior in 1999 (Before Brady Quinn). He also broke the yardage mark held by Joe Theismann.
He was drafted by the Denver Broncos in the 7th round (214th overall) of the 2000 NFL Draft. He only saw action in five games in four seasons as a backup.
Jackson went on to play for the Barcelona Dragons (Europe) and Canadian leagues like the BC Lions and Toronto Argonauts. Those teams won the Grey Cup in 2011 and 2012 respectively. He retired earlier this year and now coaches the quarterbacks for the Lions.
2007: Ken Davis, RB
Under coach Eric Collins, Davis led his 2007 team to a 9-4, 5-2 record. His final game, he saw a powerful South Panola team convert a 4th and 8 and 4th and 11 in the fourth quarter to beat THS in the second round of playoffs. He committed to the University of Mississippi but eventually attended Itawamba Community College.
2008: Chris Garrett, QB, and Chad Bumphis, WR
2008 marked the only season THS had two Dandy Dozen selections from the same team.
Garrett, a three-star recruit by Rivals.com and Scout.com, was the starting quarterback for three years. He was a 2nd Team-All-State selection and a 1st Team All-Area as a senior. He threw for 1,901 yards and 22 touchdowns to go along with six rushing touchdowns. He was rated at the #16 pro-style quarterback by Rivals, #28 in the country by Scout, #9 prospect in the state by SuperPrep, and #11 prospect in the state by Rivals.
After high school, he committed to LSU where he was reshirted his freshman season. He later transferred to Northwestern State July 2010.
Bumphis was listed as the #16 wide receiver available in the country and by Rivals. He was also listed as the 109th-best prospect overall in the nation and #3 in the state. Chad was No. 2 on the Clarion-Ledger’s list of the 10 Most Wanted High School Prospects in Mississippi. ESPN ranked him No. 5 in the state. At THS, he had 2,034 receiving yards, 1,348 rushing yards, and 568 yards passing. He also totaled 1,429 yards in returns and scored 10 touchdowns on special teams. He accounted for 2,207 yards and 23 touchdowns for Coach Collins. He committed to Mississippi State in January 2009.
In Starkville, Chad saw action all four seasons as a Bulldog. He finished his career at MSU with 159 receptions, an MSU record of 2,270 yards (14.3 average), and another MSU record of 24 touchdowns. He had 37 attempted rushes with 232 yards and one touchdown.
Chad signed a free agent deal with the Miami Dolphins April 27th.