• Jared Redding

Craddock Oil Mr. Elite Finalist, J.J. Pegues

Craddock Oil Mr. Elite Finalist, J.J. Pegues. Photo courtesy of Keith Warren, MHSAA. Graphic courtesy of Cal Brown.

Big time players make big time plays in big time games. That’s something that the second Craddock Oil Mr. Elite finalist has done his entire career dawning the blue and gold.

Senior captain Jeremiah “J.J.” Pegues has been named the second of four Craddock Oil Mr. Elite finalists after a remarkable career at Oxford High School. Since 2014, the Mr. Elite Award has been given out to the best high school football senior in the state of Mississippi. The player personifies what it truly means to be elite on the gridiron, in the classroom, in the community, as well as being someone that Mississippi high school football will miss when their playing days are finished.

Pegues is looking to be the second Oxford Charger to be named Mr. Elite, along side 2015 winner Jack Abraham. During his career, Pegues has been known as a wrecking ball, no matter where he is on the offensive side of the football in large part to his size and athleticism. He may not have the eye-popping stats, but without Pegues, the Chargers may not have had the crucial yards and scores needed to win the big ball games. His leadership has also been noted many times by head coach Chris Cutcliffe.

As a sophomore in 2017, Pegues finished the season with 681 all-purpose yards and six total touchdowns, mostly paving the way for former Charger running back Hiram Wadlington to become the school’s record holder for all-purpose yards. The Chargers were competitive, but were left out of the 6A playoffs via tie-breaker.

In 2018, Pegues was needed to step up, following the departure of a talented senior class. He would do so by getting 631 all-purpose yards and 14 total touchdowns. The Chargers would make their first playoff appearance as a member of Class 6A, but were no match for Madison Central in the first round.

His senior season saw him hoist the school’s first gold ball. Pegues nearly doubled his totals from his sophomore and junior season with 1,230 all-purpose yards and had 18 touchdowns. The Chargers tied a school record with 14 wins and erased an 18-point deficit to win the Class 6A State Championship game over Oak Grove.

The third nominee for the Craddock Oil Mr. Elite Award and Craddock Trophy will be announced on Wednesday, December 18 at 5:00 p.m.

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