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September 18, 2008Rivals.com recruiting analyst Barry Every breaks down some of the top Division I-A talent in Iowa that participated in games involving Roebuck (S.C.) Dorman vs. Greenwood (S.C.) High and LaGrange (Ga.) Troup vs. Dunwoody (Ga.) High.
Led by two-way starter Malcolm Mitchell, Dunwoody held on to win a defensive battle over Troup 14-7.
A closer look at some key players, listed alphabetically:
Greenwood vs. Dorman
OG Malcolm Boyd, 6-4/290, Dorman
ASSETS: Is already filled out and ready to compete at the next level.
AREAS FOR IMPROVEMENT: Would like to see him improve on his lateral movement, and work on staying positioned over his base and not get overextended at the point of attack.
MOST IMPRESSIVE PLAY: On a sweep in the fourth quarter he pulled to his left, locked onto a defensive back and drove him all the way into the Dorman bench area.
CONCLUSION: Boyd projects as a guard or possibly even an offensive center at the next level. Currently has several I-AA offers, but is still looking for his first DI offer.
S Walt Canty, 5-11/190, Dorman
ASSETS: Has excellent change of direction and a very high football IQ.
AREAS FOR IMPROVEMENT: Would like to see him dance less on his returns and just take off vertically. Canty could also improve his overall speed with some practice.
MOST IMPRESSIVE PLAY: On his 14-yard TD run, he put a move on D. J. Swearinger that left him grasping at air.
CONCLUSION: Was not rated by Rivals.com going into this game. He was immediately moved to a two-star and eventually will be moved up higher come the next rankings. Has no DI offers at this time, but is a definite DI prospect with excellent academics.
DE Sam Montgomery, 6-4/230, Greenwood
ASSETS: Possesses long arms, excellent speed and tremendous lateral movement.
AREAS FOR IMPROVEMENT: Will need to add some muscle mass to in order to stop the run at the point of attack.
MOST IMPRESSIVE PLAY: In the fourth quarter he missed an open-field tackle, got back up off the ground and made the tackle only four yards away from his initial attempt.
CONCLUSION: There is no doubt that he will be one of the nations premier pass rushers. Physically he will remind people of R. J. Washington who signed with Oklahoma last year.
WR Charone Peake, 6-3/185, Dorman (2011 class)
ASSETS: Has good height and makes good use of his basketball skills to make great catches.
AREAS FOR IMPROVEMENT: Will need to continue to physically develop and add about 15 pounds.
MOST IMPRESSIVE PLAY: In the third quarter he made a tremendous leaping catch while being hit by Swearinger. The collision caused Peake to land on his back and he still held onto the ball.
CONCLUSION: The speed and the hands are there, now can he progress in his route running, and blocking to set him apart from the average DI recruit? I don't think there is any doubt that he is a DI prospect already.
S D.J. Swearinger, 5-11/191, Greenwood
ASSETS: Plays with no fear and is built like a linebacker.
AREAS FOR IMPROVEMENT: Would like to see him work on his lateral movement and backpedal in order to help his coverage skills.
MOST IMPRESSIVE PLAY: His timing of a hit on Peake. He unloaded a crushing blow while the receiver was in the air trying to haul in the pass. Most fans in attendance stood in awe after that play.
CONCLUSION: No doubt that he will be excellent in run support, and should also excel on most coverage teams because of his good speed and rock'em sock'em attitude.
OT Brandon Thomas, 6-4.5/285, Dorman
ASSETS: Has tremendous feet and is one of the most athletic linemen in the country.
AREAS FOR IMPROVEMENT: Needs to keep his feet moving after contact on a consistent basis.
MOST IMPRESSIVE PLAY: On more than one occasion when he stayed on his defender and kept his feet moving, he was able to block them 10-to-15 yards downfield.
CONCLUSION: His athleticism and body shape will allow him to possibly project at four of the five offensive line positions. There is no doubt he is the top offensive lineman in the state of South Carolina.
OTHERS WITH DIVISION I-A POTENTIAL: CB Taylor Sowell, Dorman; CB Byron Best, Greenwood; DT Kelcy Quarles, Greenwood (2010 class)
NOTE: Quarles was injured and did not participate in the game. He really passes the eyeball test at 6-5, 270 pounds, and is physically one of the best-looking juniors I have seen for the class of 2010.
Troup vs. Dunwoody
OG Chris Burnette, 6-2/300, Troup
ASSETS: Already filled out and excellent lateral movement.
AREAS FOR IMPROVEMENT: Would like to see him reshape some of his upper body mass.
MOST IMPRESSIVE PLAY: Watching him running laterally while pulling on a sweep.
CONCLUSION: Could play either guard spot or center for the Bulldogs. He is in excellent shape academically and will be graduating early in order to get a jump on his college career.
RB Dalen Claytor, 5-6/160, Dunwoody (2010 class)
ASSETS: Has excellent acceleration and quickness.
AREAS FOR IMPROVEMENT: Lacks the ideal size so getting thicker and stronger will help his cause of being a DI prospect.
MOST IMPRESSIVE PLAY: Late in the fourth quarter came up with a key interception that stifled a game-tying drive.
CONCLUSION: Most likely will project as a return guy or a slot receiver and third down back. He is a very good student with good speed and agility. Will this attract a DI offer?
RB Jacorius Cotton, 5-11/1185, Troup (2010 class)
ASSETS: Has excellent hands out of the backfield.
AREAS FOR IMPROVEMENT: Would like to see more forward body lean and explosion as he hits the line of scrimmage. Also needs to keep those feet churning after contact.
MOST IMPRESSIVE PLAY: Got behind defenders on a 50-yard pass play in the second quarter, catching the ball on a full-out run.
CONCLUSION: Has definite DI body structure, but may be better suited as a receiver rather than a running back. His impact in this game was really made with his pass receiving.
WR Eric Hutchinson, 5-10/160, Troup (2011 class)
ASSETS: Has excellent hands and catches the ball away from his body.
AREAS FOR IMPROVEMENT: Very thin and will really need to add some serious muscle mass over the next three years in order to be a legit DI prospect.
MOST IMPRESSIVE PLAY: Really was the only other offensive threat for LaGrange other than Cotton in this game. He did a nice job trying to make yards after the catch.
CONCLUSION: Definitely has DI ability, just needs to get thicker and stronger.
DT Tay Irvin, 6-0/310, Troup
ASSETS: As powerful as a baby bull and comes off the ball real low and hard.
AREAS FOR IMPROVEMENT: Really needs to lose 15-20 pounds which should help his conditioning allowing him to be effective on more snaps during the game.
MOST IMPRESSIVE PLAY: Started the game off with back-to-back TFLs by busting through the center of the line and tackling the back just as they took the handoff.
CONCLUSION: Will definitely help the Golden Knights with their short yardage defense. He will need to improve his conditioning to be an every-down DT.
DE Malcolm Mitchell, 6-2/225, Dunwoody
ASSETS: Plays hard on every snap because he is in excellent condition and he has excellent body structure.
AREAS FOR IMPROVEMENT: He is a tweener in size. So in order for him to be a defensive end he will need to add 20 pounds. If he ends up at linebacker he will need to work on moving in space and covering backs and tight ends.
MOST IMPRESSIVE PLAY: Used every inch of his body to make a TD-saving tackle just before the half. He was fully extended as he tackled the quarterback on a naked bootleg.
CONCLUSION: Will remind some physically of South Carolina's Brinkley twins coming out of high school. Right now the Mountaineers and the Gamecocks are recruiting the hardest. He could be a real sleeper.
CB Cardarious Sanders, 6-1/187, Troup (2010 class)
ASSETS: Has excellent height and good hips for a corner prospect.
AREAS FOR IMPROVEMENT: As a return man he needs to dance less and just get vertical. Also could improve his overall speed.
MOST IMPRESSIVE PLAY: Looked like he was shot out of a rocket returning the second-half kickoff, almost breaking it the distance.
CONCLUSION: May be the top prospect for LaGrange in the class of 2010. If his speed is not quite ideal for corner he is big enough to play safety at the next level. He is already getting serious interest from Georgia Tech and Auburn.
OTHERS WITH DIVISION I-A POTENTIAL: RB LeFloyd Phillips, Dunwoody; RB Treaver Scales, Dunwoody; LB Blake Adams, Dunwoody; ATH Eric Bridges, Troup (2012 class); S Martavious McCullough, Troup.