May 14, 2018, I dropped GenNexXt Class of 2021 Hot 175 almost a year ago. With so much chatter about early offers for 8th graders being meaningless, not to much the same has been said about Youth Rankings. So, with me as a scout decided to show the Na Sayers why rankings and early offers mean more than they could ever phantom. Rankings serve as a digital footprint for prospects simply showing a kid’s history of being a standout player. Of course, their tons exceptions to the rule, but for the most part it benefits the athletes.
Now as for early offers being meaningless that couldn’t be further from the truth, which is my reason for breaking down my 8th grade rankings. Times have changed kids are making instant impacts on the varsity level. You even have in some cases 8th graders being big time contributors and in some cases their teams go to guy. Class is in session so pay attention as I show you age and class is nothing but a number when it comes to these Instant Impact Freshmen.
School: Parish Episcopal High School (TX)
Hot 175 Rank: 45
Youth Org: Highland Park Middle School
My very first time seeing Preston live as a Youth was in a huge game versus the eventual National Champion Fort Lauderdale Hurricanes. The thing that stuck with me that day was how resilient he was no matter what the scoreboard read. Preston always possessed the tools & mental make-up of a big-time prospect. Which brings me to my last time seeing Preston was when I had the honor of picking him for the Under Armor A11 8th grade All American game. Again, he showed me the fight of a champion, which is why I told his Dad “His best ball is in front of him he has that it factor.”
Who would’ve thought he would step right into High school and rip it up? But to say I’m surprise would be the furthest thing from the truth. Preston threw for over 3,000 yards and over 30 touchdown passes, now that’s how you start your career off with a bang.
School: Buford Sr. High (GA)
Hot 175 Rank: 15#
Youth Org: North Gwinnett
Something’s just comes with the territory, like for instance getting offered as a 7th grader going into your 8th grade year. When you have a cannon for an arm you can expect the Colleges to take notice early. Aaron McLaughlin development was always two steps ahead of the average 8th grader. While many kids were playing in All-star games before preparing for High School, Aaron was already playing with his high school 7v7 team displaying what had College recruiters buzzing.
The Buford Wolves program happens to be a Georgia Powerhouse with a historic state championship run over the last 10 years. Some would say ''No way could a freshman come in and start'', then again, we aren’t talking about any olé body. With no hesitation or butterflies Aaron McLaughlin stepped in and took command almost leading his team to a State Championship as a freshman. Scary to think this ultra-talented Gunn slinger has 3 more years to make up for falling short.
School: Kennedy Catholic Lancers (WA)
Hot 175 Rank: NR
Being the son of Damon Huard comes with having the pedigree to play the Quarterback position. Sam pretty much flew under the radar as youth football player, but he has two things going for him. 1# He is the son of a former NFL QB, 2# The State of Washington has been producing some of the best Quarterback as of late. After the year Sam had it's easy to see he will be the next in that line of big-time Quarterbacks to come out of the state of Washington.
Sam feet and balance in the pocket really stand out. He is accurate because of his fundamentals. He can “wow” you with his arm strength and throws a nice ball. Sam does an outstanding job of throwing on the run and always keeping his shoulders square. Easy to see why this kid put up astounding numbers for a freshman, to the tune of 3,432 yards passing with 34 passing touchdowns while having a 67% completion percentage. Will there be any records left when this kid is done with high school?
School: Miami Booker T. Washington (FL)
Hot 175 Rank: NR
Youth Org: Florida City Razorbacks
It is very few who can say going into their sophomore year that they’ve had more varsity starts than Morrison. Already a seasoned vet with two years under his belt including starting as an 8th grader. Size is the only reason ppl aren’t talking about this kid around the country. Scooter maybe small in stature but he shows up big playing against some of the hardest competition in Miami.
Even though he’s a great athlete, when he’s moving he’s looking to deliver the ball in the right spot and not just thinking of running. He can deliver the ball in tight windows and on time to receivers in stride when he is set and balanced properly. He’s got above average arm strength and has no issue getting the ball downfield. Really looking forward to seeing Scooter take his game to another level with the move to Florida Power Miami Booker T. Washington, now he is in the same offense that produce his cousin Maurice Alexander (F.I.U) & Treon Harris (TSU).
School: Trinity Christian Sr. High (TX)
Hot 175 Rank: 171#
Youth Org: Prime 21
Thinking back on the Under Armor A11 8th grade All American game is when I first met Shedeur. One thing you could say is confidence was in his DNA from his father the H.O.F Deion Sanders. At the time Shedeur was coming off an injury and you could tell he was raw and in need of shaking off some rust. But if no one else believed in his ability he did, he would end up taking home MVP honors. My observations of him, had me thinking he was at least two to three years away.
But Shedeur proved me wrong which is what happens when you put in work and believe in yourself. Shedeur didn’t just talk the talk as a freshman but he walked the walk, adapted throwing for over 2,220 while tossing 34 touchdown passes. The icing on the cake was this freshman lead his team to a State Championship with 3 more years to go, could this be the beginning of a run?
School: Gonzaga Sr. High (MD)
Hot 175 Rank: 35#
Youth Org: Bowie Elite Bulldogs
Caleb Williams left a lasting impression on me as an 8th grader willing his team to victory over the Maryland Heat in a rivalry game. From that point on I knew this kid had a bright future ahead of him with the arm talent he possessed their was no doubt in my mind this kid would flourish as a QB in a High School system. Things that make this kid special is when Caleb stands tall and is balanced in the pocket, he can really zip the ball. He has big-time arm strength to fit it into tight windows on intermediate routes. He’s an accurate passer when he is throwing the ball in rhythm and flashes nice touch on fade routes.
Caleb has shown he is capable of making every type of throw. Mechanically Caleb is one of the most consistent quarterbacks I have seen on film this year and because of that he is able to deliver the ball on time and in stride so his receivers can make plays after the catch. When Caleb has a clean pocket and is properly balanced, I don’t know if there are too many other quarterbacks his age that can chuck it like him. There were numerous times where I had to replay certain plays just to confirm what I was seeing. He can flat out zip the ball and it’s really pretty. He has the arm strength to fit the ball into tight windows and to make all the deep throws imaginable. With so much more football left to play, make sure when you’re speaking on some of the top QB’s in this class make sure Williams is at the top of that lists.
School: Webb School of Knoxville (TN)
Hot 175 Rank: 1
With two years of varsity experience it seems sometimes players such as Elijah are so much better than their opponents at the prep level that it’s almost unfair. It’s like they are on “Madden” level and the players they are facing are stuck on “Rookie”. Elijah Howard is a dominant player that routinely produces big plays against competition that doesn’t look like they belong on the same field as him.
Howard makes it look easy as a runner because he is so efficient with his movement. He displays great feet and has little wasted motion when he cuts. It allows him to not lose much speed in the open field and makes him extremely tough to tackle in space. He’s a consistent homerun hitter at the prep level with his blazing track speed. He’s so athletically superior to so many of them that he can simply run by most players. Howard has 5-star written all over him.
School: Roger Bacon Sr. High (OH)
Hot 175 Rank: 11#
Youth Org: Cincinnati Outlaws
Flashback to seeing film on Corey Kiner for the first time had me in awe, I was eager to see more and learn more about him. Speaking with the locals was like hearing stories of a legend since this kid suited up to play football. So, it’s no surprise to see the smooth transition to the High School level, the surprise is how fast he became dominate.
Kiner has that extra gear that allows him to be patient and then explode add his signature jump cut which happens to be deadly in the open field . He can flat out outrun pursuit angles. He runs with tremendous power, not to mention a nasty stiff arm that stops defenders dead in their tracks throw in he has great balance and is able to break arm tackles. Breaking down all the things that helped propel this kid to huge freshman campaign along with his school single game rushing record. Now you see why opposing players really need to wrap up well against him because he runs with a low pad level. He has a nice subtle spin move he uses that works very well. You’re looking at a kid that is on his way to stardom.
School: Miami Jackson Sr. High (FL)
Hot 175 Rank: 3#
Youth Org: Fort Lauderdale Hurricanes
Coming off a National Championship in Youth Football tons of big-time moments captured all on live stream for the world to see. So it's a safe bet to say Amari Daniels had the most hype on his way to High School. Let’s just say if you can get carries in the backfield that includes James Cook then you're pretty much living up to the hype & even more. The frightening part is this phenom is just getting started and has already put on a show live on ESPN. Daniels has top end speed and can get to 5th gear in a hurry add that to great lateral agility. He has outstanding feet.
Amari vision really stands out on film. He reads blocks well and hits the h*** with authority. This kid is able to run through arm tackles. He shows great balance after contact and is a very good inside runner. He can make people miss with subtle movement and has the tremendous ability to stop and start in the open field without losing much speed. When he gets a crease, look out because he goes from 0 to a 100 real quick to take it the distance. With his best ball in front of him, this kid seems to be destined for 5-star status.
School: Hewitt-Trussville (AL)
Hot 175 Rank: NR
The state of Alabama is a hard City to gage from the outside looking in on the Youth level, but that hasn’t stop them from producing some of the top athletes. Armoni Goodwin has burst on the scene to throw his name in the hat as the top back in his class. It’s hard to deny a kid who ran for 393 yards rushing versus one of the top teams in 7a. Armoni got his shot and never looked back piled up over 1,700 yards rushing while visiting the end zone an amazing 24 times, folks were talking about a freshman here.
Armoni has great feet and balance to go with outstanding speed. He’s an extremely talented athlete. Armoni runs with more power than you would expect for his size. He can run through arm tackles and hits the h*** with authority. He has very good vision and his great feet that help him as an inside runner. He can plant, make sharp cuts, and accelerate. He’s a very tough player to tackle in space. I can’t to see what this kid does for an encore going into his sophomore year.
School: Sarasota Riverview (FL)
Hot 175 Rank: 32#
Youth Org: Sarasota Seminoles
No stranger to the big moments Michael ‘’Poodah’’ Hayes has been playing versus older kids his entire life. So, what would make High School different? Poodah put together a stellar freshman campaign that gave you a glimpse into Riverview future. Poodah contributed in anyway he could from special teams to even lining up in the slot making plays in the passing game.
Poodah has good speed and great lateral agility. That agility directly correlates to how good his feet are. Poodah is very good at moving laterally and making sharp cuts to accelerate into the h***. He does an outstanding job of reading blocks at the second level and gaining big chunks because of this. He’s a good inside runner that runs with power. He can break arm tackles and keeps his pad level down despite his height. He shows the ability to make defenders miss and fights for extra yards even when the crease is not there. He can turn a potential run for lost yardage into a positive play. All about his business Poodah looks to up the ante going into his sophomore year.
School: Lakeview Centennial Sr. High (TX)
Hot 175 Rank: 91#
Youth Org: YU Yellowjackets
It has been over 3 years since the 1st time I seen this dynamic playmaker in the Georgia Gridiron Classic rip it up. This track Star has been treating his varsity opponents as if he is the elder. Camar has great speed and outstanding feet. His lateral agility is elite.
Camar has the ability to create some magic with the football in his hands. He’s the type of player that can easily turn a four-yard gain into a twenty-four-yard gain because he can flat out make people miss. He’s a slippery runner that is subtle with his movements and anticipates very well. If he gets a crease, you can kiss the baby he has a gear once he turns it on it’s a wrap. Camar is on his way to becoming a household name on the recruiting circuit.
School: Oak Park Sr. High (MI)
Hot 175 Rank: 48#
Youth Org: Detroit Spartans (MI)
Boston does a great job as a zone runner that cuts it up at the appropriate time. So many other backs with his speed tend to bounce it outside all the time because they can at the prep level, but he is not afraid to run inside. He’s a better inside runner than one would think and he’s a tough player to tackle that fights for extra yards. Boston is a dangerous player in the open field. He’s able to cut on a dime and accelerate quickly to run away from defenders. He’s got good vision and is a nightmare to tackle in space.
Boston’s greatest asset though is his ability to catch the ball out of the backfield. Most linebackers will not be able to stay with him on wheel routes and he can sneak right up the seam if teams let him. His ability to be slippery in the open field and his vision are also on display when they throw screens to him. He’s someone that must be accounted for on every passing play. Travis is a kid that has always been considered the best in his class, seems like not a lot has changed just click on the link.
School: DeSmet Jesuit Sr. High (FL)
Hot 175 Rank: NR
Barfield has good speed and nimble feet. He might not have the type of breakaway speed that will make him a homerun hitter at the next level just yet. Size is not an issue and even if he only puts on a little bit more weight, he plays bigger than his dimensions.
Barfield hits the h*** fast and does a great job of reading his blocks. His vision helps him stay at full speed and he cuts very well behind what his blockers are doing. He’s got a little bit of wiggle in the open field and has a nice plethora of moves. Barfield greatest asset though is that he runs hard and fights for extra yards. He’s always falling forward and running through arm tackles. Looking forward to seeing how this kid develops, after all Ezekiel Elliott is from the state of Missouri as well.
Name: Jabez Tinae
School: Kennedy Catholic (WA)
Hot 175 Rank: 38#
Youth Org: Sound Lancers
Jabez was a big play running-back during his youth years I witnessed this kid take over a game. But little to my surprise this kid made an effortless switch to receiver on the High School level. Most kids his age would need an adjustment period which speaks to how talented this young prospect is. With over 1,200 yards receiving not to mention he also added 12 receptions for touchdowns. His play and numbers show this was no ordinary freshmen.
Jabez has awesome speed and lateral agility. He changes directions effortlessly without losing momentum. Jabez is explosive out of his cuts. When he accelerates, he can be gone for six if he has a sliver of room. He’s a fantastic player after the catch that makes defenders miss in space and can convert short throws into long gains. He shows great vision in the open field. That comes out on offense, but also a returner. That’s somewhere where he brings added value. Numbers don’t lie, and they say Jabez Tinae is arguably the top receiver in his class.
School: Miami Booker T. Washington (FL)
Hot 175 Rank: 7#
Youth Org: Overtown Tornadoes
When you have a frame and the freakish athleticism to be a big-time hoops star, that usually means you’re a freak of an athlete on the gridiron. Jacorey is going into his 3rd year playing the receiver position but judging by his play you would think he has been playing it all his life. When you can start as a freshman at Booker T. Washington that speaks volumes to your upside. Jacorey wasted no time during his freshman year proving he has the potential to be the 1# player in the Class of 2021.
Jacorey is one of the freakish talents at the position in his recruiting class. Even when he’s covered, he’s never really covered. That’s what make Jacorey special and one of the top wide receivers in the 2021 class. If this was basketball, Jacorey would be described as an above the rim player. He can get up and use his length to attack the ball at its highest point. If the ball is thrown close to his vicinity, he can go up and get it.
He is a natural hands catcher that adjusts extremely well to the football when it’s in the air. His body control is outstanding. There might not be a better player as a deep ball receiver in this recruiting class. He’s also a stronger route runner than I expected that knows how to set up defensive backs and get them to open up before breaking back to the football. Remember the name because every Power 5 conference team will be after this kid before all said and done.
School: Marietta Sr. High (GA)
Hot 175 Rank: 5#
No stranger to Jaquez Smith abilities, I saw first hand the damage he can do in the A11 game as well as routing an adult up. Jaquez thrives off of competing so, if you say you’re the best your going to have to show him. Jaquez has everything a program is looking for athletically in a wide receiver. He has great speed and explosive acceleration combined with ideal size and strength.
This kid is a beast after the catch. He runs with authority through arm tackles and can make defenders miss with subtle moves, but it’s that extra gear that he has that makes him so good. He has the potential to make a seventy-yard touchdown look routine with the way he can catch a short pass and turn it into six points. If a corner is matched up with him that doesn’t tackle well, it’s going to be a long day for that defense. There isn’t a route he runs where he isn’t a threat to take it to the house after the ball arrives. Might sound like I’m speaking of a finish product because he is that good and has time to get even better
School: Tuscarora Sr. High (VA)
Hot 175 Rank: 33#
Youth Org: Loudoun War Eagles
As a scout you tend to hear a lot of stories about kids on the Youth level, never the one to dismiss people’s opinion so I investigate. To my delight they were on to something checking this kid Caleb Coombs out exceed my expectations. Now fast forward a year later and Caleb is making child’s play of varsity football. He has decent change of direction skills, but his straight-line speed is the differentiator for him. His ability to accelerate and hit another gear is outstanding.
Caleb is a sharp route runner for a freshman, he adjusts well to poorly thrown footballs and shows good hands catching the football away from his body. He can still maintain balance when he adjusts as well and so it doesn’t stall him from making plays after he catches the football. He shows good concentration and strong hands to catch the football in traffic, but let’s not forget he showcase his skills by going up and getting the football at its highest point. With room to get better Caleb is on his way up the recruiting boards with room to grow.
School: Pace Academy (GA)
Hot 175 Rank: 50
Youth Org: Paulding Middle School
One thing that will get your attention when covering Youth Football is size the same thing rings true on the High School level. Jayden Thomas has had a High School frame since he was an 8th grader but what made him a top prospect was his skill set. With Jayden’s size and skill set you begin to see why he was a instant success on the varsity level. Jayden is a smooth athlete, but also flashes some explosive burst. He has very good long speed. He has the right build and can only get stronger, with the height and leaping ability that make him a nightmare to cover on the outside.
Jayden does a great job of tracking the ball in the air and shows very good ball skills. He will go up and get it as a receiver and also does the same at safety. He can be a jump ball receiver and is a tough matchup in the red zone because of it. Jayden hasn’t received any College offers as of now, but once any recruiter pops on the tape that will change.
School: Desmet Jesuit High school (MO)
Hot 175 Rank: 139#
Youth Org: Matthew Dicky Bulldogs
Big things come in small packages which is the case when it comes to Ra’ Shod Harvey-Smith. I remember this kid feeling slighted on where he was ranked as a 8th grader, what better way of making someone a believer than balling out on the varsity level. Ra’ Shod has great speed and flashes explosive burst. His lateral agility is very good.
Ra’ Shod definitely has the physical tools that make him good at what he does, but it’s the other parts of his game that make him a special player. He has an advanced understanding of how to set up defensive backs by changing speeds with his routes and is able to create separation because of it. He’s already so quick out of his breaks that this makes him even tougher to cover as a someone lined up in the slot. With spread offenses Ra’ Shod has options even if doesn’t grow another inch. But the beauty of performing as a freshman is he has time to hit his growth spurt.
School: Lancaster Sr. High (TX)
Hot 175 Rank: 22#
Youth Org: Reagan Middle
Normally when you have a dominant Youth phenom who scored a ton of touchdowns as a running-back, you get concern about the transition to receiver. That couldn’t be further from my thinking when it comes to Majik who was making a name for himself on the 7v7 circuit. Majik always cross trained which is big reason he was able to be a valuable contributor to his varsity squad.
Majik shows good hands and the ability to catch the ball well in traffic. He’s not afraid of the contact and is more physical after the catch than you’d expect. He also can make people miss and understands when to cut it and add in that extra gear to run away from people. He has that same element as a returner too. Already holding 3 early College offers it’s safe to say this kid will get better with time.
School: Denton Ryan Sr. High (TX)
Hot 175 Rank: NR
Billy has very good speed and is a fluid athlete. He has some explosiveness to his game and has good lateral agility. It’s not a shock that a player like Billy would shine more as a receiver. He is a natural hands catcher that shows he can snatch the ball out of the air and displays great body control.
Despite his size, he plays bigger with the way he runs after the catch and is not afraid to take a hit to make a play. He catches the ball well in traffic. He’s an above average route runner that can gain separation out of his breaks. If he has a step, he can gain big yardage. All in all, Billy Bowman Jr. has made a name for himself early was someone you have to account for on every snap.
School: James E. Taylor Sr. High (TX)
Hot 175 Rank: 14#
Youth Org: Katy Sun Devils
One of the best young men you would ever want to meet high character kid. Hayden spent his 8th grade year playing tight end and he looked good, you could tell from his frame he would grow out of the position. Once this young man focused on Offensive-Line you could pretty much tell he was destined for greatness. Among his 8th grade peers at the University of Miami in front of Coach Richt, Hayden was a man amongst boys. This is one prospect I knew would never see the Junior Varsity team.
Hayden has the length and feet that programs look for in a protection, in pass protection Hayden moves very well and is light on his feet. He uses his length to his advantage and keeps defenders from getting close to him. He doesn’t lean too much and is balanced in his pass set. He’s natural knee bender and solid athlete for the position. He does a great job of moving his feet and getting his hips around in the run game. His footwork and steps are really impressive. He is technically sound in that area. Plays with good pad level and fits his hands inside of the frame of the defender. Hayden has all the makings of 5-star on and off the field
School: James E. Taylor Sr. High (TX)
Hot 175 Rank: 53#
Youth Org: Katy Sun Devils
Gentle giant is how you could best describe Bryce off the field. I had the pleasure of watching film of this kid running the 4x4 100 meter relay and Wow is all I could say. I’m not sure if Bryce Foster is human or not. It just seems like a natural gift for a kid to be that big at his age. And not just big, but also athletic. Foster is a specimen that is physically gifted and perfectly built to play offensive line.
Bryce shows he can finish. He plays with good pad level and is a knee bender. When he fires off low and quick off the ball, it’s almost unfair to some of the kids who have to go up against him at the point of attack. He moves well when pulling or when getting up to the second level. Does a nice job of getting his feet and hips around to reach block on the edge. He is light on his feet in his pass set and delivers a solid punch. Not heavy footed like you would expect for someone his size and his age. Frightening to think Bryce & Hayden have played together since their Youth days, one thing for sure James E. Taylor football team is blessed for years to come.
School: Casteel Sr. High (AZ)
Hot 175 Rank: 27#
Youth Org: Gilbert Chandler Hitman
I love the way this kid plays the game since I watched him maul defenders at Pop Warner Super Bowl. He is mean, but not dirty. He finishes his blocks and puts his defender on his ass consistently. It’s a beautiful thing to watch players who can physically dominate every play and takes pride in his technique & effort. He gets after it and is quick off the ball, gets good hand placement, and sustains his blocks.
Dieu does a nice job of pulling and adjusting his pad level when making contact. He isn’t a one-hitter. He always tries to finish through his opponent. He has good feet and is able to reach defenders on run plays. He also shows above average feet as a pass blocker. Does a great job of delivering a punch and using his length to lock out pass rushers. He gets a little high in his pass set at times and will have to adjust this when he starts to go against better competition. I feel this kid is the Class of 2021 best kept secret can’t to see him receive his first College offer.
School: Episcopal Sr. High (TX)
Hot 175 Rank: 143#
Youth Org: Katy Sun Devils
There are some dudes that can walk into a room and don’t even have to say a word to announce themselves as a football player. I imagine that’s what it must be like for Luis Chavarria wherever he goes. He looks like an offensive lineman is supposed to look like. Anyone this size at the high school level should be a dominating run blocker and Chavarria shows he can be. He needs to get a bit more explosive hip snap off the ball and get his pad level consistently lower, but he wants to finish blocks and put guys on the ground. Not only that, he’ll look for the next guy to block too. I love that attitude.
Length is obviously a huge asset for him, but it’s only an asset if he can deliver a solid punch with great timing. He does that and has some violence with his hands. He can be light on his feet, but tends to shuffle a bit in his pass set. I don’t worry as much about that part of it as this stage for him. He’ll improve technique wise as he progresses in his career and the athletic tools are there for him to do so.
School: Osceola Cowboys (FL)
Hot 175 Rank: 65#
Youth Org: CFAA Mustangs
I was invited to Kissimmee for the Osceola Panthers vs CFAA Mustangs rivalry weekend while there this trenches warrior caught my attention, the kid was huge and wore the number 95# he got down and dirty on the offensive & defensive line. That kid was Delfin Xavier Castillo from that point on he was on my radar. Knowing how good he was playing varsity Football out the gate just spoke to how talented he is. From height/frame/length standpoint, Castillo checks all of the boxes. Castillo is a finisher that wants to put defenders on the ground. As his Freshman season progressed, his pad level and hand placement kept improving and he became even more dominating as a run blocker.
I only got to see flashes of him moving laterally, but he showed the kind of athleticism to suggest he could perform a bucket step and reach on zone running plays. He got a little high when he did this, but flexibility doesn’t appear to be a big concern so it should be improved with repetition. Only a freshman so it’s only matter of time before every college in the state will be beating this young fella door down.
School: Belleville Sr. High (MI)
Hot 175 Rank: 17#
Youth Org: Detroit Spartans
Elite is a word that I think that is thrown around too often when evaluating players, but sometimes its use is warranted when describing a specific skill or trait. To me, it’s special when you see an offensive lineman show an extra edge to his game and want to drive players 30 yards down the field or put them on their butt. Damon Payne has that elite trait in him. When you throw in the fact that he is a massive as he is at his age, that’s why he is such a coveted recruit by the top programs in the Power 5 conferences.
Damon fights to finish his blocks. Even if he initially loses off the snap, he works hard to recover complete his block. He plays with good pad level for his height and gets underneath his opponent. The power and effort is awesome, being a freak of an athlete he consistently gets off the ball quicker stonewalling defenders. Payne also does a nice job positioning himself and getting his feet and hips around before driving defenders out of the play or into the ground. His steps do not always look natural though and he’ll need to improve his feet to handle quicker players. He’s balanced in his pass set and uses his length well to stone pass rushers with his punch. Damon has the luxury of being a considered a future 5-star on both sides of the ball, shows just how much a freak of nature he is.
School: Episcopal Sr. High (TX)
Hot 175 Rank: NR
Cullen has everything a program is looking for physically in an offensive tackle. He has huge legs and room to add weight in his upper body. He is a great athlete for his size and has very good feet. Cullen inexperience shows in his technique. He needs to work on his pad level, hand placement, and consistency off the snap, but naturally displays the mentality needed for the position as a run blocker. He drives players downfield and wants to finish. He plays with very good effort.
Cullen can get out the second level because of the type of athlete he is. He shows the feet and hips to play in a zone blocking scheme. His technique is raw as a pass protector, but his potential to be great in this area is extremely high. He flashes a devastating punch and light feet but isn’t balanced in his pass set. He is only going to get better in this area with more repetition. I will keep an eye on this kid just to see how he develops he has the frame and willingness to get better.
School: Mansfield Timberview Sr. High (TX)
Hot 175 Rank: NR
Youth Org: DFW Ravens
Montaye Dawson has that kind of speed. The kind of speed where even other fast guys marvel at him. Montaye runs like everyone else is standing still. He has elite speed. He can change direction fluidly and is an overall outstanding athlete.
Montaye is a gamebreaker. His speed is the kind that destroys pursuit angles. If he gets a crease, then you can strike up the band. He shows good patience and lets his blocks set up on toss plays. He knows when it’s time to kick it into another gear. He can be slippery in the open field but can show the strength to run through tackles. He catches the ball well out the backfield and is a dangerous player on wheel routes. When he catches the ball out in the flat, he knows when to accelerate and cut it up. If he gets a step-in coverage, then he could be gone. Will be extremely tough for just about any linebacker to cover. Versatility is the name of the game mentioning Montage, because he can line up out wide or return kickoffs & punts he is an X-Factor.
School: Bloomingdales Sr. High (FL)
Hot 175 Rank: 74#
Youth Org: Brandon Ravens
Covering a Tampa Select All Star game I got a chance to see a young kid name Charles Montgomery look so advanced for his age. I guess that is a habit Charles couldn’t shake since he is his varsity do it everything player fresh off the park. Charles lines up in the backfield and out in the slot. As a runner he does a nice job of hitting the h*** fast and can make people miss in the open field. He has enough speed to take it the distance if he gets a crease at the second level. He reads his blocks well and doesn’t force into spots where he doesn’t have to when he has the football.
Charles is a major threat as a receiver out of the backfield on screens and flare routes. He runs a fairly limited route tree out of the slot, but a lot of that probably has to do with him being dangerous wherever he gets the ball. He has too much speed for most safeties to handle up the seam and can turn bubble screens into big gains. He is very tough to tackle in space. I could go on all day about how many ways Charles affects the game even as a defensive back, but you get the picture this kid is a problem.