Ole Miss Football Players Serve As Pre-College Counselors

OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM D.T. Shackelford
OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM
D.T. Shackelford
OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM

Aug. 9, 2011

OXFORD, Miss. – While many college athletes spend their summer bulking up for the fall or enjoying their free time at home, two Ole Miss football players spent their time giving back to the state of Mississippi in a big way. Football team members D.T. Shackelford and Kermit Tyler spent their summers as pre-college program counselors for the Division of Outreach and Continuing Education at the University of Mississippi.

Both Shackelford and Tyler were counselors for students in Gear Up, a federally funded grant residential program that brings rising 10th graders from around the state to the Oxford campus for week-long classes. After their time with three sessions of Gear Up, the pair continued as summer counselors for other Outreach programs: Tyler with Summer Academy, a residential program for 7th, 8th and 9th graders, and Shackelford with JumpStart, a credit program for incoming UM freshmen.

“Kermit and D.T. were two of our best counselors,” said Cass Dodgen, Director of Pre-College Programs. “They both possess an innate ability to level with high school kids and point them in the right direction.”

In addition to being academic mentors for students age 13 – 18, Tyler and Shackelford put in long hours acting as positive role models for nearly 500 students during the summer. From 6 a.m. wake-up calls to 11 p.m. room checks, and everything in between, Tyler and Shackelford did it all.

Tyler, who is on a medically exempt scholarship after a career-ending condition, says that while the summer was much more difficult that he originally anticipated, it was a great learning experience.

“I heard about the programs from a friend of mine and it sounded like something I would be interested in doing. It’s not for everyone. You really have to know how to balance your time and be able to fit school, work and your own activities into one day,” said Tyler, who managed to take two summer school classes as well as attend mandatory team tutoring sessions every day. “I would definitely do it again.”

Shackelford, who wants to be a school principal after his football career, is no stranger to working with youth. In his hometown of Decatur, Ala., Shackelford worked with the local Neighborhood Christian Center throughout high school. He says he was able to draw on that experience during his time in Gear Up.

“It wasn’t an easy job, but when you have a passion for something, it makes it a lot easier,” Shackelford said. “Some days it was work, but I loved it.”

Still recovering from off-season knee surgery, the 2011 Chucky Mullins award recipient rehabbed his knee while carrying out all of the duties expected of a Pre-College Programs counselor and more. He used the injury as an example for high school students with NFL dreams who may not have considered the repercussions of unforeseen events.

“You have to have something up top.  You always have to have a back-up plan,” said Shackelford, who says he tried to level with students and let them be themselves. “Gear Up gave them hope. A lot of them are lost, not by choice, but because of the environment in which they are raised. It’s only right for me to give back to the state and community.”


07/15/2014 - Rebel Ready

Shackelford Nominated for Allstate AFCA...

For the second straight year, Ole Miss' Deterrian Shackelford (Decatur, Alabama) has been nominated for the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team®, which is one of the most coveted and prestigious off-... Read More [+]

07/10/2014 - Rebel Ready

Bramlett Selected To NCAA SAAC

Ole Miss baseball player Brady Bramlett was selected to represent the Southeastern Conference as a member of the NCAA Division I Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC). Bramlett's appointment... Read More [+]

07/09/2014 - Rebel Ready

Track Volunteers with Horizons Summer...

The Ole Miss head track coach Brian O'Neal and assistant coach Greg Stringer opened up the Manning Center for the participants in Ole Miss' Horizons Summer Learning program on Wednesday (July 9).... Read More [+]

06/27/2014 - Rebel Ready

Rebels Volunteer with Horizons Summer...

The Ole Miss women's basketball team opened up the Tuohy Center and put the participants in Ole Miss' Horizons Summer Learning Program through some drills on Friday (June 27) morning. Read More [+]

06/16/2014 - Rebel Ready

Nall Begins Year-Long Internship With NCAA

Mary Ashton Nall grew up around intercollegiate athletics, specifically college football. Her father, Hugh, played football at Georgia and coached at Ole Miss and Auburn. From competing in the NCAA... Read More [+]

05/19/2014 - Rebel Ready

Nall, Nichols Make SEC Community Service Team

Ole Miss seniors Mary Ashton Nall and Alex Nichols were named to the 2014 Southeastern Conference Community Service Teams for women's and men's track and field, respectively. Read More [+]

05/06/2014 - Rebel Ready

Ole Miss Athletics Assists With Tornado...

Ole Miss Athletics delivered a 35-foot trailer stacked full of donations on Monday to help storm victims around Mississippi. Read More [+]

05/02/2014 - Rebel Ready

Ole Miss Gathering Aid For Mississippi...

Through the Rebel Relief Project, Ole Miss fans and area residents will have the opportunity to donate household and clothing items for tornado victims across Mississippi at various locations in... Read More [+]

04/15/2014 - Rebel Ready

Ole Miss SAAC Hosting Shoe Drive

The Ole Miss Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC), is partnering with Purshoeing Joy to collect used shoes for children in Guatemala. SAAC members will be collecting shoes at Friday's (April... Read More [+]

04/02/2014 - Rebel Ready

Special Olympics Tennis Event Held At Ole ...

Ole Miss hosted the Special Olympics tennis event at the Gillom Sports Center Wednesday. The event was sponsored by the North Mississippi Regional Center. Read More [+]

Facebook
Twitter
Blog
  • Rebels Ahead of Schedule in Year Three

    Thursday, November 20, 2014 - Football

    It's sometimes easy to forget where the Ole Miss football program was just three short years ago, when Hugh Freeze was interviewing for the head coaching position. The Rebels had won just two games in 2011 and had lost 14... read more

  • Ole Miss Athletics Week in Review (Nov. 10-16, 2014)

    Monday, November 17, 2014 - Athletics

    Ole Miss Athletics Week in ReviewNov. 10-16, 2014Women's Basketball- The Ole Miss women's basketball team opened up the 2014-15 season with two wins over the weekend. The Rebels took down Grambling 92-67 in the season opener on Friday and followed... read more

  • Observations from the Best Seat in the House -- Nov. 16

    Sunday, November 16, 2014 - Athletics

    The Ole Miss football team was off, but it was a busy week in Ole Miss athletics nevertheless, as the men's and women's basketball teams opened their respective seasons. Here are some thoughts and opinions on the week that was:-... read more

  • Getting Healthy, Staying Sharp on the Bye Week

    Friday, November 14, 2014 - Football

    No. 10 Ole Miss was without several starters and regular contributors against Presbyterian, and many others were limited.  But given an extra week of rest, head coach Hugh Freeze said he expects everyone, with the exception of the players out... read more

  • The Season: Ole Miss Football Episode 11

    Wednesday, November 12, 2014 - Football

    The Season: Ole Miss Football - Episode 11 - Presbyterian (2014) from Ole Miss Rebels on Vimeo.... read more

  • Ole Miss Athletics Week in Review (Nov. 3-9, 2014)

    Monday, November 10, 2014 - Athletics

    Ole Miss Athletics Week in ReviewNov. 3-9, 2014Football- Ole Miss took a break from the rugged Southeastern Conference and earned a 48-0 shutout win over Presbyterian on Saturday.- It was the Rebels' first shutout since beating Tulane 39-0 in 2012.-... read more

  • Observations from the Best Seat in the House - Nov. 9

    Sunday, November 9, 2014 - Football

    Austin Miller handled all of this week's edition of the Observations from the Best Seat in the House. Check out what he had to say below:- The nation's best scoring defense finally got its first shutout of the season, as... read more

  • Wilkins, Dodson Shine in Blowout Win

    Saturday, November 8, 2014 - Football

    Ole Miss racked up the second-most yards in school history, totaling 640 yards, including 402 yards on the ground, in a 48-0 rout of Presbyterian. The Rebels were able to limit the reps for several players in the contest, with... read more

  • Three and Out: Keys to Ole Miss-PC

    Saturday, November 8, 2014 - Football

    Three areas to watch as No. 11 Ole Miss hosts FCS opponent Presbyterian in its final non-conference matchup of the regular season. Execute, Stay Heathy Saturday's game with Presbyterian is more about Ole Miss than its opponent, as the team's... read more

  • Injuries Create Opportunities for Young Players

    Thursday, November 6, 2014 - Football

    With injuries mounting on both sides of the ball, Saturday's game against Presbyterian presents an opportunity for young players and backups to gain experience and make an impression on the coaching staff. Among those injured players, head coach Hugh Freeze... read more

  • The Season: Ole Miss Football Episode 10

    Wednesday, November 5, 2014 - Football

    The Season: Ole Miss Football - Episode 10 - Auburn (2014) from Ole Miss Rebels on Vimeo.... read more

  • Path To Atlanta: A Little Homecookin'

    Monday, November 3, 2014 - Football

    A question we keep hearing is what needs to happen in order for the Rebels to get to the SEC Championship game. It's pretty simple, just cheer for the home team. The lone exception to that notion is Ole Miss'... read more

  • Ole Miss Athletics Week in Review (Oct. 27-Nov. 2, 2014)

    Monday, November 3, 2014 - Athletics

    Ole Miss Athletics Week in ReviewOct. 27-Nov. 2, 2014Football- No. 4 Ole Miss lost a heartbreaker to No. 3 Auburn on Saturday night, 35-31.- In addition to losing the game, the Rebels lost star receiver Laquon Treadwell on what looked... read more

  • Observations from the Best Seat in the House -- Nov. 2

    Sunday, November 2, 2014 - Athletics

    In this week's edition of Observations from the Best Seat in the House, Metz Camfield and I teamed up to give you our thoughts and opinions of the week that was in Ole Miss athletics. There's a lot on our... read more

  • Rebels Look to Move on in Face of Adversity

    Saturday, November 1, 2014 - Football

    Dragging an Auburn defender on what initially looked to be a go-ahead touchdown, Laquon Treadwell fought his way toward the end zone, but had his ankle rolled over and fumbled into the end zone. In the moments that followed, the... read more