MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Sports

June 28, 2011

Rebel no more: Sequoyah grad shifts from Ole Miss to SE Louisiana

— Nate Stanley has found a new collegiate football home.

The Sequoyah High School graduate will play at Southeastern Louisiana University in Hammond this season. The Lions are a Football Championship Subdivision (formerly I-AA) team and that means Stanley can play right away instead of waiting for a year to become eligible.

Stanley transferred from the University of Mississippi in April.

“(Southeastern) recruited me after word got out that I was transferring,” Stanley said. “I visited them in the end of May for the first time. I like their kind of offense. I decided this is where I wanted to be.”

Stanley was projected as the starting quarterback at Mississippi going into last fall, but Oregon transfer Jeremiah Masoli soon took over the starting job. Junior college transfers Randall Mackey and Zack Stoudt along with West Virginia transfer Barry Brunetti have also joined the program.

Stanley, on his way to Hammond on Tuesday night, saw it as time to leave Ole Miss.

“I went into the spring competing for the job and the coaches decided to go a different direction,” he said. “It’s a business. I understand that. I decided to take my talent somewhere else.”

Before leaving, Stanley started the Rebels’ 2010 season opener against Jacksonville State and completed six of 10 passes for 133 yards and three touchdowns. He also played briefly against Oklahoma State in the previous season’s Cotton Bowl, which Mississippi won 21-7. Then-starter Jevan Snead went out briefly with an injury.

Stanley completed 28 of 55 passes for 424 yards and four touchdowns in his Ole Miss career. He also had two interceptions.

Stanley said he decided on SLU, which plays in the Southland Conference and is coming off a 2-9 record in 2010, over Tulsa, Montana  and Stephen F. Austin in Nacogdoches, Texas.

Coming out of high school, Stanley was ranked as the 89th best player in the nation by Sports Illustrated, No. 23 quarterback in the country by Rivals.com and No. 61 signal caller in the nation by Scout.com. He was ranked as high as the No. 9 player in Oklahoma by Scout.com. He passed for 2,153 yards and 32 touchdowns as a high school senior.

Stanley, who starts classes on Thursday, looks forward to getting started and playing for coach Mike Lucas.

“It starts for me as soon as I get there,” Stanley said. “I’m going to get a playbook and see where I fit in. They’ve told they wanted me to be the guy who fits their offense. I know I have to compete because nothing will be given to me.

“I feel comfortable with my decision.”

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