June 13, 2010

NOLA trio stand out at camp

Last Saturday the Houston Cougars coaching staff held it's second mini-camp of the summer that coincided with the three day camp being held for quarterbacks and wide receivers. With about 80 players joining the quarterbacks and receivers already on campus, the turnout wasn't quite as high, but there seemed to be a little better quality.

With players coming from all over the Houston area and even a player that showed up from Iowa (Johnston to be exact), it was a trio of prospect that made the trek over from St. Augustine High School in New Orleans. The powerhouse program from Louisiana is known for turning out large numbers of Division 1 prospects every year.

Massive offensive tackle Jonah Austin was one St. Augustine player that made the trip and found the camp to be extremely informational.

"The camp was very fast and physical," said the 6-foot-7, 305 pound tackle. "I learned a lot and I feel like I held my own. Coach B.J. (Anderson) taught me how to get my kick back faster and that is something that should help me produce more."

Austin, who already held an offer from Houston, is no stranger the the camp circuit and has been getting his fair share of attention from colleges across the country.

"I went to the LSU camp and I also went to the Nike Camp in Alabama," said the Rivals three star prospect. "I'm also planning on going to Tennessee's camp up in Knoxville. Right now I have offers from Michigan, Tulsa, Kansas, Kentucky, Houston and Baylor and I have been talking a lot to Tennessee, Louisiana Tech and some other schools too."

Although the talented tackle has not seen the Cougars in person, he still hopes to get the chance and says they will be right in the mix when he makes his decision later this summer.

Safety Renaldo Thomas joined his teammates at the camp as well and also liked the level of the camp's competition.

"I felt like the camp was very intense and the competition was descent," said the 6-foot-3, 190 pound defensive back. "At the same time though, I felt like I had the upper hand because I am very familiar with all of the drills we were running."

The talented safety already held an offer from Houston coming in and has also been very busy on the camp circuit.

"I went to the LSU camp and the Alabama Nike camp with my teammates, but I have also been to camps at Alabama and Memphis," he said.

The final player in the New Orleans trio was defensive end Lawrence Burl who worked out at outside linebacker on Saturday to get a feel for how he might fit into a 3-4 defense like Houston's.

"The camp was fast paced and real nice," said the 6-foot-3, 215 pound defender. "It was my first time to ever workout with the linebackers and it wasn't really too different from the defensive end spot with the rushing parts of it."

Despite never working out at the position before, Burl felt he held his own and actually enjoyed the nuances of the rush linebacker position.

"I liked the position a lot," he said. "I didn't think I would be very good at covering but I did real well. Of the eight guys I went up against in one on ones I think only one caught a pass against me."

Although the recruiting front has not been quite as busy for Burl, he has attended some camps and knows the offers will come eventually.

The trio of talented players helped St. Augustine to a successful season last year in which the Purple Knights lost by one point to eventual state champions West Monroe in the 5A regional final.

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