PATRIOTS PLAYMAKER PLANS FOR SEC FUTURE:
John Curtis figures to be one of the most talented, if not the most talented team in Louisiana in 2011, regardless of class. That was manifested once again Tuesday morning.
Patriots defensive end Torrey Bell tells SportsNola.com that he has verbally committed to Mississippi State.
"I have been knowing about Mississippi State. They are the biggest conference in the country," said Bell. "When I visited Starkville, it was like family. I wanted to go somewhere where I could play early and I feel like I will get that opportunity at State."
Bell has the ability to play defensive end or outside linebacker. He definitely has a preference.
"I prefer to play defensive end. I like coming off the edge and rushing the passer. If it is up to me, that is what I would like to do but I can play either one," Bell said.
A standout basketball player for John Curtis, Bell says his time on the hardwood benefits his football skills. "Basketball helps football with the footwork and by staying in shape," said Bell.
Patriots head coach J.T. Curtis is very enthused about Bell's future at State.
"I think his upside is just tremendous. He has all the physical tools you want in a rush end and outside linebacker," Curtis said. "He starts for us in basketball. He's a true 6'5 and should end up playing at 250 or 260 in college. He has tremendous physical potential.
He is an excellent pass rusher off the edge. He is so athletic. He can drop into coverage. He has outstanding ability to move his feet and zone blitz or cover with his size."
Bell says he had offers from Southern Mississippi, McNeese State and Tennessee. Bell visited LSU and Auburn camps and was scheduled to visit Tulane this weekend but has canceled that visit.
He is the second John Curtis senior-to-be to commit to a Division 1 school. Tight end Dillon Gordon (6'4, 250) previously committed to LSU.
Defensive lineman Marcel Andry (6'3, 275) and tackle Jonathan Levens (6'7, 300) are getting Division 1 attention as well for the Patriots, who figure to be a huge force in 2A this season after two consecutive runner-up finishes to Evangel.