NEW YORK (Ole Miss SID) - Two more Ole Miss Rebels were selected in the 2009 National Football League draft Sunday, as wide receiver Mike Wallace was chosen in the third round by Pittsburgh and Jamarca Sanford was taken in the seventh round by Minnesota.
Other Ole Miss players selected this year were Michael Oher and Peria Jerry, who were drafted Saturday in the first round at No. 23 by Baltimore and No. 24 by Atlanta, respectively. The last time Ole Miss had four players selected in one draft was 2004.
The 84th overall pick, Wallace is the first Rebel chosen by the defending Super Bowl Champion Steelers since Kendrick Clancy was the 72nd overall selection in the third round of the 2000 draft.
"I'm very proud of Mike," said Ole Miss head coach Houston Nutt, who has coached 37 draftees over the last 12 years.
"He's a speed wide receiver with special teams value. With two first rounders and now Mike in the third, this helps our recruiting."
"Right before Pittsburgh called, Coach Nutt called and said I was coming off the board real soon," Wallace said. "About five minutes later, I got the call from Pittsburgh. I'm excited about going to the Steelers, and it's the best situation possible. They said they have a lot of plans for me and that I can contribute early, both as a receiver and on kickoff returns. My play book should arrive on Tuesday. This is a dream come true."
A 6-0, 180-pounder from New Orleans, Wallace earned four letters with the Rebels and saw action in all 37 contests his final three seasons. He ranks second all-time at Ole Miss in all-purpose yardage, third in TD receptions and fifth in receiving yards.
Wallace recorded seven career 100-yard receiving games, second-most by a Rebel, and topped the SEC in yards per reception in each of his final two seasons. On special teams, he holds Ole Miss records for single-game, season and career kickoff return yards.
As a senior, Wallace earned All-SEC honors as both a wide receiver and kick returner. He established Ole Miss single-season records for all-purpose yards (1,737) and kickoff return yards (861) and finished third in the SEC in both areas.
The 2008 campaign also saw Wallace equal the Rebel record for 100-yard receiving games with four and pile up the fifth-most receiving yards in school history (784). He led the SEC and ranked third in the NCAA (among top 100 WRs) in yards per catch (20.1) and was sixth in the conference in receiving yards per game (60.3).
Sanford was made the 231st overall pick by the Vikings, who drafted a Rebel for the first time since taking Marcus Johnson in the 2005 second round.
A Batesville, Miss., native, Sanford was a four-year letterwinner for Ole Miss and started all 44 career games in which he played. As a senior, the team captain was the SEC active leader in career tackles.
Sanford topped the team in solo stops (56) and ranked second in total tackles (82) in 2008. He also tied for the team lead with two forced fumbles and recorded 4.0 TFLs and two QB hurries. The 5-10, 200-pounder was honored with the 2008 Chucky Mullins Courage Award as well as the 2008 Leadership Award from the Birmingham Alumni Club.