Thursday, May 27, 2010

Centerville Linemen in the Circle

Doing a little evaluating in the Dayton area Wednesday, and enjoyed visitng retiring coach, Jim Place at Hamlton. Also stopped to see my friend Mo at Trotwood Madison. Both men are excellent coaches who do alot for the kids with whom they coach.

One of the highlights of the day was watching Centerville's Michael Bennett(211) and Benny McGowan(212) throw the discus. Michael is peaking at the right time. Last week, he threw 188 feet. Yesterday, he won the discus with a throw of 191 feet. Excellent balance and quickness. Tough competitor with the swagger. Benny stunk it up for awhile. Just looked tight and out of rythum. Of course, I left after his third bad toss, to watch the long jump. In finals he threw the discus 155 feet for fourth place and a trip to the state. Next year I will watch all of his throws. Benny missed all of last season, but is looking good now. At least 6'3 and very explosive. Like his confidence.

Justin Murray (OL-Sycamore- 211). The big schools are concerned about his weight(245). He is not there yet. But he has excellent feet and OL instints. Like his concentration and movement. Has thrown over 160 feet this past season. A scholarship guy with excellent feet who needs time to get bigger.

Josh Bass (DB-Springfield-211) popped a 23 foot long jump. Steadily improved over season. Because of his height, needs to get into camps and show his stuff. And he will. Very competitive and excellent recovery ability. Just has been over overshadowed by Trey DePriest. Get into camp.

Rodriguez Coleman (WR-LaSalle-211) is slipping through the cracks. Watched him last fall have a career night against Moeller. At that time, I was concerned about true speed. Wednesday, he had a 14.8-110HH time and finished 2nd in his heat. Tall and can jump. Just think his potential better is much better than recruiters give him credit. Grades may be of some concern.

Keep an eye on Cody Quinn (CB-Middletown-212). Has burst and recovery skills. Skinny hips. Not as tall as I would like a CB, but has everything else. Plus very competitive. Right around 11.0/ 100 meters. Looks good on video.

Two more 212 Class members who I really liked were Chris Mims (RB-Colerain-212) and and Antonio Nelson (RB-LaSalle-212). Fast, fast, and fast. Strong, tough competitors. Both were anchors on their realy teams. Looking forward to watching run the football this fall.

Wanted to mention Kaleb Ringer (LB-Northmont-212). Watched him last fall and he makes plays all over the field. Really runs a little tight in hips, but he anchored the 4X100. A lot of toughness. A little shorter than the experts say, but good heighth. H will be a top guy.

Finally, nice to talk with David Fulcher Jr(RB-Mason-211). Injured in the first game and missed the complete season last year. Has increased his speed and has increased strength. Coming back from season long injury is tough, but he should do fine. If his mental approach is excellent, he will do excellent.

Always dislike publicly ranking prospects, and writing articles like this. You can never mention enough prospects. But, I guess some prospects is better than none. Another regional track meet tonight.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

My friend, John Reed

Last Friday I made the trip to Coldwater to pay my respects to the late John Reed. Talked with his wife, Jan, for a few minutes and to one of his assistant coaches. Arrived at 1:45. Calling hours were to begin at 2:00. Ten people were ahead of me, and as I was driving away at 2:15, there must have been 70 people standing in line. Basically, that tells it all about John Reed, former head football coach at Coldwater.

Both Jan and John are Upper Sandusky people. First met him when I was a freshman in high school. He was a senior, and, as most freshman were, we were "low-lifes" to the seniors. Over the years our friendship grew, and most importantly, our respect for each other grew. If you knew John's path to the Ohio High School Football Coaches Hall of Fame, you would understand the tremendous respect that I had and have for him. Now, we did not always agree with each other in our younger years, but as we aged, we became very good friends.

In the old days, Coach Hayes set the standard for young coaches. If you wanted to coach football, schools highly desired that you played the game. Profanity and physical toughness were sometimes necessary to get the respect of parents and players. Along comes John Reed. Never played a down of football in his life. Never played a high school sport. Very seldom used profanity. Never took the Lord's name in vain. By his own admission, not a " brawler." However, he was a role model for character. Studied the game inside and out. Spent numerous hours in preparation. Excellent teacher. Treated people right. Super organized. All he did was win and build character.

John was "driven" to be considered one of the best. That drive was almost a curse at times. In his last email, he told me his goal was to be in attendance at the OSU Spring Game. I could sense that "drive" coming back. When I heard that he could not make the trip, I knew the cancer was too much. Not making the trip was not from a lack of "drive." His body was just too weak.

I will miss my friend. I will miss the lunches at the OSU Clinic. I will miss seeing him on the sidelines. I will miss the emails. I miss the dry humor. I will even miss his intimidating smile. But most of all, I will miss the "spiritual high" I got after talking with him. After aany conversation(either short or long) with John Reed, I walked away a better person. For that I am thankful.

Monday, May 10, 2010

College Recruiting Nights

College recruiting nights, for me, were a chance to "kill two birds with one stone." When I began to do evaluations and really get into the college scouting business, college recruiting nights were big for me. You see, I got information from the high school coaches about their prospects. Along with this, I got to know both the college and high school coaches. We are talking from Cleveland to Central Ohio to Toledo to Dayton to Cincinnati to Summit and Stark Counties. Twice a year.

Now the NCAA has once again shown its wisdom. No longer can D-1 college coaches attend. Especially in the spring, this does not make sense. In the spring high coaches have a chance to really promote their younger classes. Plus the college coaches can loosen up some and enjoy talking to friends and foes among the college staffs. The D2 and D3 schools have a field day, which is good. No slight to the lower division schools intended, because many of them get my "stuff." For selfish reasons, I like to have D1 schools in attendance.

Regardless, I have three more to visit. Tomorrow is Summit County. Obviously, I am excited about going because you always get something out of it. Plus Dan and Gerry will be taking my money, and it is always good to see them.

Point for both parents and coaches. Update your contact information. Try to provide some video. Most importantly, coaches, if you cannot be there, have someone represent your school.

Finally, promoting our players the "right way" gets harder and harder every day. Now the NCAA has limited another way to help kids. My fear if that the OHSAA is trying to emulate the NCAA. Sadly, but is all about the money.