Friday, July 17, 2009

More Offensive Linemen - Class of 2010

Just did not feel right with only mentioning 18 OL guys in my earlier blog. Nick Ihasz(Bedford) - Very heavy and needs to work on speed. Like his toughness. Like his improvment from last year. Needs to keep working on feet. Jeff Tanner(moeller) a typical Moe loneman. Good feet. Good technique. Needs to keep adding weight and strength. Needs to get bigger. DaJuan Calloway(Glenville) really big upper body. Almost too heavy. Needs to be a better bender. Has the feet to pass block, but needs to continue to work on balance. Eric Franklin(Mooney) also almost too heavy. Needs to lose weight. Needs to be a better bender. Needs to play harder. Does have the size that programs want. Brad Ferguson(West Branch)long tall frame, but needs add strength and weight.Like his feet. and reach. Plays defense, but could be a very nice OLineman. Ben Bruzzelli(Wadsworth) continues to surprise me. Liked him a 10th grader, but has not improved like I though he would. Big, tough wrestler in the winter. Needs to be more athletic and dominate OL. Does play some defese. One to watch, because of feet and leverage.

Just wanted to mention a few more offensive linemen. Really all, if they play well, are scholarship type guys. Just need to continue to improve and grow.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

"My guys" the Class of 2010 Offensive Linemen

The OL position, as I have often said, is one of the tougher positions for me to evaluate. Of course, size and strength have to looked at, but "bench press strength" is over-rated. Feet, length, and natural instincts are really important. The toughness and quickness of the opposing DL guy is important. Every lineman has to have some _ _ _ _ _ in him.

Andrew Norwell(Anderson) to me, is simply the best. Tall, strong, and just nasty. Plays hurt and will flatout smack you. May have to work a little harder on pass blocking technique.

Matt James(St Xavier) also from Cincinnati has good feet, extends well, and has excellent size. Has been "dinged-up" some the last two years, so evaluators did not get to see the real him. Maybe improve his balance.

Dakota Anderson(Xenia)really has upside, but because he has played TE, and, of all things, quarterback, scouts have not been able to evaluate him as an OL. But he is a bender and has good feet. Needs to learn blocking skills as an OL guy, but blocked as a TE. He is 6'6 and adding weight. Like his potential.

Andrew Donnal(Anthony Wayne) Liked him from the start. Good feet and balance.Long and runs well. Watched him in hoops and like his balance. May not understand the work involved to play at the top level. Needs more of what Norwell has, and is some _ _ _ _ _. Will be fine.

Skyler Schofner(Big Walnut) - Really like size -6'6-300. Good feet. Strong. Bends and is an excellent drive blocker. Due to family situations ,has changed schools too much. Learn one system Needs to really concentrate on football. Potential is huge.

Simon Cuijanovic(Benedictine)Experts will say, "under radar guy." Growing and getting stronger. Really good feet. Toughness is evident. Smart. Just have a good feeling about him. Early games will tell. Just keeps getting bigger, stronger, and tougher.

Kevin Scholmer(Lakota West) is growing into his own, also. Really good feet. Long and good pass blocker. Needs to continue to increase strength. Like his potential, but need to see him dominate early.

Travis Jackson(DeSales) Runs well. Bends and is an excellent run blocker. Only 6'4 but can play guard. Like his feet and the fact that he is still growing. Instincts and feet caught my eye. Better pass blocker than given credit.

Clint Shepherd(Eaton) tough and works really hard. strong. good balance, but must improve flexibility. Really concerned about his not being a bender.Competitive desire should help overcome any weaknesses. Just a little stiff.

Clay Rolf(Eastwood) Have been somewhat "just okay" with Clay, but he has alot of potential. The frame to add weight. Tough. Athletic. Never played inside and down. Once he learns the skills with interior line(both sides)play, he should be really good. Frame and work ethic very evident.

Chris Pace(Avon Lake) Very tough and has the _ _ _ _ _. Not as tall as advertised. Possible center. Needs to improve balance and feet. Good strength. Work ethic will help overcome weaknesses.

Matt Rotheram(North Olmsted) Huge frame. Will get bigger. Solid feet. Needs to be a better bender and finish blocks. Long arms. Needs to develop his "punch" and overall explosiveness. Obvious size caught a lot of recruiters attention.

Jeff Meyers(Massillon)Needed to lose weight and did. Like his balance and run blocking. A little short, but speed and instincts make up for it. Short arms. Overall a "brawler," which is good. Needs to keep weight down. A sleeper.

Taylor Miller(Edgewood) Very athletic. Bends well. Excellent feet. Strength getting better. 6'5- 290. Really needs to play every down. Needs an "attitude to be the best." Simply needs to play harder. May be one of the most athletic linemen, but does not the _ _ _ _ _.

Logan Hauserman(Logan Elm) 6'7 basketball player. Good feet. Needs to get much, much stronger. The frame, the smarts, the athleticism to be really good. Just needs to get the "football conditioning" and strength need to be good. Like his potential alot, but really needs get football " toughness," to play at the highest level. Like him alot.

Isaiah Byler(Elyria)Re-did his body. Needs to continue to develop body. Good feet. Good work ethic. Needs to continue to develop blocking skills. Like the fact that he lost alot of weight and now is putting it back the right way. Needs to play well early to convince recruiters.

Bryant Ausperk(St Vincent-St Mary)Huge prospect who has worked really hard on body to get into playing weight. Good feet. Good athleticism for size. Over-powering run blocker. Maybe too big.

Mike Dennis(Carey) runs really well. Long arms. Good explosion. Trains hard, but competition is D-6. Like his movement. Concern about when the pads come on.

A lineman from St Charles did not want to send me video, so I cannot evaluate him. This happens sometimes, but he would not be in this group to begin with. Two or three other OL guys need to try to defense first. Of course, my tight end from Solon, Darryl Baldwin, will eventually be a college offensive lineman.

Offense finished. Of course, I missed some, but I could win with these guys.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Running backs in Ohio 2010 class????

Running backs are alittle easier to evaluate than some other football positions, at least for me. The problem in this class is the shortage of true ball carriers. That is runners who can play at the top level. Not a knock on this class, but it is what it is.

My hands down favorite is Erick Howard(North Canton Hoover). Good size at 5'10-215. Solid speed, but does lack true 5th gear. Stronger, the more carries he gets. Tough, maybe one of the toughest in years. But I worry about his desire off the field. Andre Givens(Hubbard) really impressed me on video. More of a slasher with strength and toughness. Excellent speed. Like his burst and his separation speed. Excellent vision. Antonio Banks(Middletown)is a strong legged, compact runner, but very durable. Good vision, but needs to improve flatout burst. Good competitive speed, but needs to get faster. Durability is his strength. LeVeron Bell(Groveport) has the skills and vision. At 6'1-215 saw him high jump 6'0. Like his durability and toughness. Needs to improve burst and true breakaway speed. Needs some OL support. Devin Clodfelter(Columbus Independence)) has the raw skills, but needs finetuned. Has the burst and top speed. Needs better balance and strength. Size at 5'10-195. Spencer Ware(Princeton) has been told by some major schools to move to RB. Tough enough, but I worry about his RB skills. If anything move him to defense.

Tyson Gulley(Akron Garfield) is a nice, fast RB, but at 5'9 and with excellent quickness should move to CB on defense. Love his toughness. Shaun Jones(Dublin Coffman) has speed and quickness. Needs to improve burst. Needs to improve strength.
Kyle Slater(Anderson) runs very, very fast and is punishing. Short, but not small. Grades are his problem. Kevin Johnson(St Ignatius) gets stronger and faster each year. Played some as sophomore. Maybe a better DB. Like his vision. Toughness? Corey Douglas(Milton Union) has impressed me in camp, but was injured last year. Strong and fast. Strong upper body. Needs to overcome last year's injury. Have always liked Marcus Johnson(Coshocton) in the wing-t offense. Fast, strong and durable. May not have the vision and natural instincts of an RB. If not move to defense. Like as a SS or OLB. Toug football player. Anthony Hitchens(Lorain Clearview) passes the eyeball test(6'1-210), but I worry about his natural athleticism. Question RB skills. If he bends, and works on balance, could be a linebacker. Doren Thomas(Wintersville) has true speed and burst. More of a CB prospect. Josiah Holt(Midview) impressed me in camp. Concern about size, but he has solid speed and works hard. Needs to explode in the first three games to draw attention. Germany Woods(Lakewood St Ed's) a 5'9-195 power runner with good speed. Watched him as sophomore. Needs to put up numbers early. New system may help. Really like him. Just needs to be consistent. Strong and durable. Jake Squirek(Parma Normandy) is short period. But very strong and very competitive. Loved on video. Plays both ways on a small school team. Maybe a defender. Just a tough hard-nosed guy.

I have missed some, but there just are not that many running backs this year.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Quarterbacks in the class of 2010

Contrary to some of the experts, offensive linemen are some of the hardest to evaluate, because of the level of competition that they play. Wide receivers may be next, but oh my are quarterbacks sometimes a pain.. I say that because so many college QB coaches look for different skills and abilities. For me, the ability to make plays, lead the team, and make good decisions are really important. Good feet more than arm strength. Anyway, my top QB's for the class of 2010.

Because of his highlight video and arm strength, Andrew Hendrix(Moeller) might be the best. Tough leader and can make the throws. Excellent size at 6'3-200. But has not be under the gun, yet. That would be a concern for me. Mark Myers(St Ignatius) is also a big(6'4) who like Hendrix did not get alot of reps last year. But he play alot as a sophomore. Like his toughness. Good pocket presence. Sees the field and makes good decisions. Luke Massa(St Xavier) showed promise as a 10th grader, but was injured. Injured again last year. Solid arm. Understands coverages. Good feet. Just has never been healthy. Needs to stay healthy. Caleb Watkins(Middletown) has taken some off field hits. Unfounded and untrue rumors still persist. Caleb is a true gunslinger. Tough. Makes plays with his strong arm. Good size at 6'3-210. Verlin Reed(Marion Franklin) continues to impress me. Fast, excellent vision, good feet. Like his decision making. Arm strength improving. Needs coached up some.

Jon Ballard(Austintown Fitch) has improved greatly, but must continue to convince evaluators that he can be a QB. Still learning QB position, but I like his ability to make plays. At least 6'2, with good feet. Arm getting stronger and can run or pass. The quiet, confident leader is Zach D'Orazio(Cuyahoga Heights). Only 6'1, but excellent vision to make plays. Not a cannon, but arm strength continues to improve. Natural leader and QB. Dwight Macon(Steubenville) probably is not a scholarship QB, but a scholarship football player. Reminds me a little of Troy Smith. Natural leader. Good kid. Does not quite have the arm strength, true speed, or size for my QB's, but he is such a likeable kid and leader. Spencer Ware(Princeton) in the right college program could be amazing. Has the cannon and can make plays. Runs well. Big play guy. Tough, tough competitor. Problem- evaluators want him to play either RB of DB. Not a natural RB. If not QB, may an OLB. Rob Partridge(Massillon) interest me. Sometimes too mechanical, but really like his QB abilites. Good leader. Smart. Tends to overthrow. Can throw touch pass deep ball. Could surprize talent scouts.

Time to move to another position. Tyler Brause(Bucyrus Wynford) has put up stats and is very athletic, but does not have top level passing skills. Tremendous kid. Excellent leader. Needs to move to TE to make use of size(6'4) and athleticism. Really liked Keith Wenning(Coldwater) as a QB his sophomore year. Still like him. Big and athletic. Tremendous baseball prospect. At the top level, he may have to move to TE, but may still be a QB. Alex Zordich(Cardinal Mooney) has worked very hard on his QB skills. Strong upper body and tough, smart kid. Donot like his release and technique. A very tough OLB on the next level. Dominique Brown(Winton Woods) is an excellent leader. Tough competitor. Good feet. Needs to really improve passing skills. A strong safety or OLB on next level, if his academics improve.

James Flowers(Padua)has been waiting in the wings and now is showtime. Big at 6'5-215. Strong arm. Needs to improve footwork. Liked him as junior. Needs to produce early. Curtis Watson(Bellevue) has put up big numbers for two years. Watched him play basketball. Throws darts. Smart. Simply cannot run. Like size at 6'3, but he cannot run well enough to play QB at scholarship level. Jay Bucher(Dayton Bellbrook) surprised me that he does not have more schools interested. Strong arm. Big frame. Does not run as well as I like, but makes plays. Better prospect than evaluators think.

Listed many QB's. Maybe too many. Omitted some that really, really need senior years. Braxton Miller(Wayne)(2011) is the "guy" in Ohio. Younger classes have some potentially really good ones.

Dayton City 7on7

Last Thursday, I attended the Dayton City 7on7 passing showcase. I applaude the work that the football coaches in the city have done to improve the football there. The camp was very well run. The competition was really intense, but not to the point where unsportsmanlike conduct was called on every play. In fact, there was never an incident that was even close.

Alot of talent to evaluate. Some no-brainers, but most of the players just need a really good start the beginning of this coming season to play at the highest level. Joking with Trotwood's, Willie Ballard, I think that he has been around forever. Justin Favors, Trotwood's TE also looked good. Hard for me to start naming guys, because I always feel that I may have left someone out.

Probably the most valuable information for me was the "younger kids," or underclassmen. Again, too early and, only 7on7 competition, but I like RJ Williamson from Dunbar. Just something about his presence. Like Marcus Graham, Trotwood's junior QB. Needs to slow down and let the game "come to him," but will improve. Strong arm. Also liked Trotwood's WR MJ Jordan. Very thin, but is very acrobatic and can jump over the goal posts. Antwan Gilbert looked good on both sides of the ball. Must keep getting bigger and stronger, but Belmont's junior QB, Nate Henderson showed poise and leadership. Some 2012 guys also looked impressive, but way too early to get them exposure.

Good to see old friends like Bosie Milner and John Derr working with the kids and giving direction to the younger coaches. Dunbar's James Lacking continues to work building Dunbar's program. Also impressive was seeing the good, young black coaches giving back to programs. That is important to me, as I travel the state.

Finally, I am really glad that they did not have 7on7 contests and combines back in my coaching days. Of course, I would have been there coaching.

All in all, and for what it means, it was very rewarding to see the work and the comraderie among coaches and players at Dayton's 7on7 day last Thursday. Job well done.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Ohio's 2010 Tight End class

For some the position of TE is a dying breed in today's spread offenses. More and more teams are making use of a FB to play as an H-Back. Some teams are just flexing a thinner TE to get him into pass plays. Howver, Ohio still puts out at at least 2or3top TE prospects and this year is no different.

Alex Welch(Elder) had a really good highlight video and is very solid. Like his toughness and 6'4-235 frame. Solid blocker. Good ball catching skills. Really like his athleticism after the catch. Big!!Will get his nose wet.

Alex Smith(Lakota West) also has the size 6'5 225 to go along with excellent pass catching skills. More of a long strider, but gets downfield okay. Also good after the catch. Will have to improve blocking toughness, but does have good base blocking skills. Big!! Needs to get his nose wet.

Branden Carozzoni(St Ignatius) maybe lacks some of the weight( 6'4-215) coaches want, but he is getting bigger and stronger. Gets downdield really well. Separates and finds open area. Excellent ball catching skills. Like his toughness. Excellent future.

Ty Farrell(Brunswick) is not getting media attention but he , much like Carozzoni, just needs to continue to get bigger and stronger( 6-4-210) to be a top rated TE. Love his toughness. Needs to fine tune ball catching skills. May be a DE, but like him at TE.

Darryl Baldwin is a DE, but plays some TE at Solon. Need to mention him at TE, but at the next level, might be better on the OL. Natural bender. Good speed and base. Do not know how athletic he is to play on the outside. All of 6'6-255. Also long.

Justin Favors(Trotwood Madison) has been starting for a long time. Really good ball catching skills. Sometimes plays the slot, but a true TE. Getting big, maybe too big. Blocks well enough.

Need to mention Dan Schneider(Avon Lake). Needs grow alittle. Some schools recruiting him as TE, but he maybe better suited on defense or get bigger and move to center. Good skills and moves well. Would not recruit him as a TE.

Really like the potential of Brandon Pedro (Massillon). Good size at 6'3-230), but really needs to improve speed. Also needs to improve TE skills and movement. For some reason, I was impressed last year and need to see him this summer. Has a chance.

Chase Hoobler(Orrville) is busting his tail at LB, but may move over to offense. Big at 6'3-220 and really like his toughness at LB. Just may lack that true quickness and playing speed to play DE. Tough football player.

Also like David Schneider(Moeller) but just does not have the sixe (6'1) to play TE on next level. Blocks well. Strong, with good ball skills. Gets downfield well, but just really short. Would possibly recruit him at another position.

Also mentioned under wide receivers, prospects who could come in play the tight end position. Really like the group of wideouts who could grow into tight ends.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Camps or combines??

Yesterday I visited the Gary Stevens QB/WR Camp at Bedford HS near Cleveland. This was my third year attending the camp. This year I was somewhat dissappointed in the number of really good young prospects attending. Obviously, there were some good ones, but not as in the past. The Mathews boys and LC Chambers from Bedford looked good and show alot of promise. A couple of young QBs can be big time guys before they finish their careers. St Ed's was represented well. Odis Prunty (210-WR),and Nate Stanley(210-WR) both run such disciplined routes. But the point of this blog is camps or combines.

Football combines, both local and national, serve their purpose. At a combine , prospects get tested and measured. These results go to college programs across the country. Sometimes I question if colleges take the results seriously, but that is not my problem. There is money to be made, but often not from the inner city kid who does not have the extra money to attend.

College one days are good. Some schools, especially MAC schools have taken their show on the road. Ohio University was the first a few years ago, and now others are doing it. Great for the colleges and exposure for the prospects. Prospects get timed and measured and coached, as well as exposed.

Exposure - The "buzz word " of parents and internet "experts." Just how much exposure does a prospect need. Does he have to fly to Texas in December to get exposure and spend 1500 dollars? Does he have to go to Football University and spend 450 dollars?

The Stevens Camp and Mike Schneiders Camp (just to name two) really get into working with the skilled kids. There are linemen's camps also. These camps are not the best for exposure, but they do a really good job of teaching technique. hey break down each skill and continue to try to break some of the bad habits that a prospect has developed. There is also 1on1 and 7on7 competition.

My point is check out the reasonably priced private skill camps. They may not give you the great exposure, but if a prospect is young, or is older and is needing finetuned, these camps may be just what he needs.