INDIANAPOLIS (WTOK) The annual NFL Scouting Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis will take place Feb. 23 through March 2. The NFL released the list of players invited to the combine on Friday with 337 prospects receiving invitations.
Here is a list of six players with local ties that will be participating:
Raekwon Davis (Meridian HS) - Alabama DE
The Meridian native announced he would forgo the 2019 NFL draft to return for his senior season. Although the The Tide fell short of making it into the College Football Playoffs this season, they ended the year with a 35-16 win over Michigan in the Citrus Bowl. ESPN’s draft analyst Todd McShay predicts Davis could be a first round pick in this year's draft.
Benito Jones (Wayne County HS) - Ole Miss DT
Jones ended the 2019 season with 30 total tackles, 19 of them solo, and 5.5 sacks. Despite the Rebels disappointing season that ended in heartbreaking, 21-20 loss to in-state rival Mississippi State in the Egg Bowl, Jones was an All-SEC second-team selection. Jones also received an invite to this year's Senior Bowl in Mobile.
Chauncey Rivers (EMCC) - Mississippi State DE
Rivers began his college football career at Georgia in 2015. He played in four games for the Bulldogs before he was dismissed from the team due to three marijuana charges in seven months. Rivers then went to EMCC, playing for one season under head coach Buddy Stephens where he was featured on season two of "Last Chance U". In 12 games at EMCC, Rivers totaled 25 solo tackles and 20 assists for a total of 45, along with 8 sacks for a loss of 44 yards. Rivers then went on to play at MSU for two seasons, earning Second Team All-SEC in 2019.
Tyre Phillips (EMCC) - Mississippi State OL
Phillips only played one year of football at Grenada High School. He graduated from Grenada in 2015 and went straight to EMCC, spending two seasons in Scooba. During his freshman season in 2016, Phillips played 11 games with EMCC and helped anchor a line that led the Lions to a 11-1 record. While at EMCC, he was regarded as the best guard in the JUCO ranks by 247Sports and the fourth-best by ESPN.com. In 2017, Phillips left for Mississippi State where he redshirted the 2017 season. In 2019, he started all 13 games at left tackle for the Bulldogs, earning the highest offensive grade among MSU offensive linemen and the second-highest offensive grade on the team from Pro Football Focus (80.1) according to his MSU football bio. Phillips also participated in this year's Senior Bowl in Mobile.
Brian Cole II (EMCC) - Mississippi State S
Cole grew up in Saginaw, Michigan where he was a four-star prospect in high school. He signed with Michigan in Feb. 2015 and was the No. 1 player in the state of Michigan according to 247Sports and ESPN.com. After the Wolverines beat Florida in the 2016 Citrus Bowl, Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh released Cole from the team. Cole soon found a home at EMCC and after a year of playing with the Lions, signed on to play at Mississippi State. He redshirted for academic reasons in his first season on campus in 2017. He played in five games in 2018 before suffering an upper-body injury against Florida that sidelined him for the remainder of the season. In 2019, he started in all 12 games. In this season's Egg Bowl win over Ole Miss, Cole tallied five tackles and recovered a fumble. Cole was also a 2019 Team Captain and participated in this year's Senior Bowl in Mobile.
Antonio Gibson (ECCC) - Memphis WR/RB
Gibson played for two years at East Central under current head coach Ken Karcher. During his freshman season with the Warriors, Gibson racked up 1,089 all-purpose yards and led the team in receptions (29), receiving yards (563), receiving TD (9), kick returns (20) and kick-return yards (370). He earned All-MACJC second team recognition in 2016 and in 2017, was named to the All-MACJC first team. After two seasons at ECCC, Gibson received offers from Memphis, Kentucky, West Virginia and Marshall but chose to sign with Memphis in Dec. 2017. During his junior season in 2018, Gibson played in all 14 games. During his senior season, Gibson had 38 receptions for 735 total yards and 8 touchdowns. His biggest game of the season came against SMU where he had 6 receptions for 130 yards and 1 touchdown. Gibson was one of two players selected as the American Athletic Conference's Special Teams Players of the Year. He also participated in this year's Senior Bowl in Mobile.