March 20, 2009

Son of star quarterback making his own way

Steve McNair, Jr. knows the questions are coming.

He's OK with it, too.

After all, the former NFL quarterback who shares the same name as the Hattiesburg (Oak Grove), Miss., wide receiver is his father.

"There's nothing wrong with it," McNair said of the line of questioning that inevitably goes toward the path Steve McNair Sr. paved from Mount Olive to Alcorn State to the Houston Oilers, Tennessee Titans and Baltimore Ravens. "He's my father and everybody expects me to follow in his footsteps. I'm going to, but in my own way."

The younger McNair, a 6-foot-1, 195-pounder who caught 58 passes for 962 yards and eight touchdowns as a junior, said there's only "a 10 percent chance" he follows his father to Alcorn State.

"I'm trying to do my own thing and go my own way," McNair said.

That is likely good news for the myriad of teams in pursuit of the talented wide receiver. Southern Mississippi and Mississippi State have offered scholarships already. Florida State, Tennessee, Alcorn State, Oregon, Ole Miss and West Virginia are sending letters and showing serious interest. McNair, for his part, is in no hurry whatsoever to decide.

"I'm just going to sit back and wait until after my senior year," McNair said.

One school that has particularly piqued his interest is Ole Miss.

"My interest level (in Ole Miss) is pretty high right now," McNair said. "They're the biggest school in Mississippi. If I have a chance to go there, I'd go there. (Ole Miss wide receivers) Coach (Ron) Dickerson has said he likes the way I run my routes, the way I get off the ball and my quickness.

"I watched them beat the No. 1 team in the country, Florida. I liked the way they spread the ball."

McNair said the Rebels' staff recently sent him an invitation to Ole Miss' annual Grove Bowl game on April 18 at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium. McNair said he's never been to Oxford, but he hopes that changes in 29 days.

"I'm trying to get up there," McNair said.

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