June 8, 2009

Hot Eleven: First Weekend of Camps

The first week of summer camps have come and gone and we've put together the top eleven performers over the three days that included two stops in Houston and one on the Baylor campus in Waco on Friday. The players aren't listed in any order.

SicEmSports.com Hot 11

As far as notoriety, Briscoe was upstaged by the four star New Orleans quarterback Munchie Legaux, but by the end of the day everyone there knew his name. The 6-3 signal caller looked very comfortable throwing the ball on the run, he threw the ball with accuracy and strength, and was very responsive to coaching and instruction. If you didn't already know that you were watching a player that just finished his freshman year of high school then you wouldn't have figured it by watching him on Friday.

It just takes watching Jolly for a few reps to realize that he's an elite player at his position. At about 6-1 he has good height, he's an exceptionally smooth athlete, and is faster than a lot of people give him credit for. He moved effortlessly through drills and was always getting open in the one on one battles.

While a lot of people already know about his athletic ability and skills on the field, what was just as impressive on Friday were his intangible qualities. During the defensive back drills Bennett was praising ever other player that was doing well and pushing other players to do better. Also during the one on one battles the coaches asked for a defensive back to cover a tight end and not only was he the first one to run out there, but he was the only one out there willing to cover a tight end for much of the afternoon.

Williams went through drills at both linebacker and defensive end and was one of the top performers at each position. He was fluid in his transition and physical as a linebacker, and his speed off the edge in pass rush drills made gave him a large advantage over the bigger offensive linemen when he lined up at defensive end. He's a little undersized for an end, but he's very well put together and wants to play there.

Baylor has only extended scholarship offers to two tight ends thus far and both of them are already committed to other schools. Zach Swanson attended Baylor's camp on Friday, but there was an effort this weekend to bring in a couple tight end prospects for a closer look. The best looking tight end this weekend, including Swanson, was Sealy's Bradley Miller. The 6-4 pass catcher caught everything thrown to him and looked very comfortable in his routes. He got in and out of his breaks very cleanly and was able to adjust well to the ball. He doesn't have any offers at this point, but as he gets out to camps and if he has a big senior season then I expect that to change.

At only about 5-9 to 5-10 Umesi isn't a big corner, but he's very compact and well put together. Umesi was very comfortable in man coverage when facing the receivers in one on one drills, and blanketed nearly every receiver he faced. He was able to use his speed to stay stride for stride with every receiver deep and was physical against receivers slanting across the middle.

Henderson lined up at both defensive end and defensive tackle Sunday and he could be an impact player at either position. Similar to Kelvin Palmer who signed with the Bears last year Henderson is a big defensive end at around 260lbs who is able to hold the edge and stop the run as a strong side defensive end. He also shows the agility to get upfield and rush the passer from the outside. The San Antonio (Tx) Roosevlet product was also strong inside where he could use his power and quickness to beat bigger and slower interior offensive linemen.

There were only a few players this weekend that made me say wow and Davis was one of them. He was the definition of unblockable on Saturday, and one parent of an offensive player in his district told Davis that he's going to remember him and will tell his son to run away from whichever side of the field Davis lines up. If he was only a few inches taller he would have offers from a large number of schools.

While many players this weekend were out there competing and trying to earn a scholarship offer, Johnson was only one of the few players out there that holds an offer from the Bears, he was the only committed player competing at the camps this weekend. Johnson demonstrated why he is one of the top receivers in the state with his physical play and constant ability to get open.

The first thing that stands out when watching Sam Holl is his size. He was about an inch or two taller than the other defensive backs on Sunday, and physically he's very muscular and well put together. He was able to use his size and aggressiveness to knock receivers off their routes and break up passes when they came in. He also demonstrated very good ball skills and was not only one of the few players to pick off a pass, but he ended up with about three interceptions on the afternoon. Holl is a physical in the box safety so the man coverage drills weren't best suited for his skills, but he was still one of the top performers.

Like Bennett, Adams' intangible qualities were just as impressive as his physical ability. One coach made the comment that Adams was showing that he wanted to get better and become an all district performer because he stepped in and took many more reps than the other players. He is another somewhat undersized corner, but he is very natural in his backpedal and turning his hips to run with receivers.


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