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Rebel Rags all in against Leo Lewis

Let’s make one thing clear with this whole situation.

Ole Miss itself is not involved in this suit. The university is not a party in this suit nor do they have a say in how this case goes.

Also, Mississippi State University and the NCAA aren’t parties in the suit.

The popular retail store in Oxford “Rebel Rags” is a private business that is suing three individuals, one of them  former Brookhaven star and current Mississippi State linebacker Leo Lewis.

Ole Miss hasn’t sued anybody yet and Mississippi State has not sued anyone.

We’re clear on that? Ok, good.

When Ole Miss released their 125-page response to the NCAA’s notice of allegations, it was stated that up to $2,800 worth of merchandise and clothing were given to Lewis and MSU defensive lineman Kobe Jones. It also claimed that merchandise was given to former Ole Miss offensive lineman Laremy Tunsil’s stepfather Lindsey Miller.

The Rebel Rags suit states that the charges have caused “financial damage” to the booster that runs the private business.

Mississippi State denied to comment on the situation regarding Lewis and Jones since nothing has come about with the two players as of yet.

Seems fishy to me.

As a highly touted linebacker out of Brookhaven High School, Lewis was originally committed to Ole Miss and flipped to Mississippi State on National Signing Day. Lewis claims to have received $10,000 in cash from an Ole Miss booster before National Signing Day in 2015.

Lewis has become the focal point of the NCAA investigation against Ole Miss and that point of view won’t change any time soon. 

Ole Miss made it clear in their response that they have seen inconsistencies with Lewis’ words to the NCAA. Ole Miss’ response claims that the former Ole Brook star changed his description of the way money was handed to him and who started the contact with the booster.

The Rebel Rags suit against Lewis, Jones and Miller revolves around what Lewis told the NCAA. The lawsuit claims that Lewis fabricated his story about the store in order to bring Ole Miss down. Ole Miss wants to claim that Lewis’ side of the story has little to no credibility and cannot be relied upon to implicate Ole Miss in the charges by the NCAA.

That could all work, or it could not. It’s a simple concept, but a long, complicated process.

The Rebel Rags suit is completely independent of the NCAA case against the Rebels. The NCAA simply won’t pause their investigation and wait for the Rebel Rags suit to play out in order for them to come to a final decision.

If Rebel Rags can win their case and prove that Lewis fabricated his story to the NCAA about Ole Miss, then that’s a different story.

Anyone can sue the NCAA. Winning the case would be actual proof.

The NCAA granted Lewis immunity from further punishment if he came clean about his recruitment with Ole Miss. If it is proven that Lewis lied to the NCAA, or if Mississippi State told Lewis to lie to the NCAA to cover their involvement with the NCAA investigation, then momentum completely shifts.

The lawsuit will further expand and more dirt will come against Lewis, Jones and Miller.

Will it have an impact in the NCAA case? I have no idea, but it certainly helps.

Dylan Rubino is the sports editor for The Daily Leader. He can be reached at dylan.rubino@dailyleader.com.