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July 30, 2012As the days without football linger on, RebelGrove.com will break down Ole Miss' 15 most important players heading into 2012. A new spot will be revealed each weekday leading up to the first practice.
At times, we'll cheat and combine a couple names into one spot, but it's our list, so we'll do what we want. The list focuses just on the upcoming season - not future career performance.
We continue the countdown with a wide receiver who could be poised for a big season.
Name: Ja-Mes Logan
Hometown: Houston, Texas
Position: Wide Receiver
Career Stats: 24 games, 49 catches, 661 yards, two touchdowns
2011 Stats: 12 games, 20 catches, 274 yards
Hugh Freeze's offense is going to pitch it around on Saturdays, and that means someone gets the opportunity to catch a lot of passes. Donte Moncrief is clearly Ole Miss' top wide receiver and the No. 1 playmaker in the passing game, but a solid No. 2 must emerge to help keep defenders somewhat off Moncrief and take advantage of single coverage. Junior Ja-Mes Logan may just be the receiver to do those things. We expect a breakout season from the redshirt junior.
Logan had an excellent spring, as he excelled in practice and received the inaugural Eli Manning Award, given to the Rebels' most outstanding offensive performer during spring drills. During the Grove Bowl, he had 88 yards receiving and two touchdowns. Logan runs clean routes and also displays nice hands, even in traffic. He enters the fall at the top of the depth chart at flanker and should give Ole Miss a mixture of big plays and possession catches.
Rivals.com rated Logan a three-star prospect in 2009 out of Westfield High School. Also an accomplished baseball player, Logan had nine high-level offers and took official visits to Oregon, Missouri and Oklahoma State. He committed to Ole Miss on Jan. 31, a week after his visit to the Rebels and signed a couple days later. While a Lone Star State product, Logan is originally a Natchez, Miss., native.
Logan redshirted in 2009 but had a pretty successful freshman season, playing in all 12 games and starting five of those. He was third on the team in receptions and receiving yards and caught touchdowns against Arkansas and Mississippi State. He set a yardage career high with 84 yards against the Razorbacks. Logan's sophomore season was a step back, as the Rebels struggled to do much through the air all season. Again his statistics were third on the team, but he had nine fewer catches and a drop of just more than 100 yards in season yardage. He started four games.
Logan is expected to be a consistent target for the Rebels this season and an all-around receiver who can move in space and catch balls in traffic. Moncrief should be an elite receiver in the conference, but Logan's emergence would make everybody on the offense better. Logan's backup is sophomore Vincent Sanders, and the Rebels will operate out of a base formation that features three wide receivers. Terrell Grant is behind Moncrief, and Collins Moore, Philander Moore and Randall Mackey occupy the H receiver position.
After two seasons of flashes but a lack of consistency, it's time for Logan to be a factor at all times for the Rebels. He's going to have favorable matchups at the line of scrimmage, and Ole Miss is in desperate need for a receiver to step up and join Moncrief. Logan's experience, route-running and hands make him the logical option. The Rebels' offense is much better with a consistent Logan in it.
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