Friday I will make my annual trip to the Ohio High School State Track Meet at the Jesse Owens. Having been both a high school track coach and track official, I still enjoy watching young people compete on the track and in the field. But, from a business sense, the Meet is a great place to evaluate football talent.
My approach to evaluating players at track meets is a little different than most. Instead of the finish line, I like to be at the starting line. When watching football players on relays, I like to be at the actual exchange zone. In the field events, I get as close as I can. When the distance runners compete, I go to the concession stand.(humor). To avoid being a distraction, I never talk with football players until after they compete.
The following are some of the football players who I will be watching pretty closely. Of course, I am more concerned about the Classes of 2013, 2014, and 2015, but I will watch some of the seniors, before they head off to college.
DB Caleb Day (2013), from Hilliard Darby is competing in the 110 meter hurdles. Good time to watch for burst and hip rotation.
The 100 meters for Division 1 will be exciting. Solon's RB Khoury Crenshaw (2103) qualified with a 10.56. Smokin! Two players from the Class of 2015, RB Shaun Crawford, from Lakewood St Ed's and RB DeVohn Jackson, from Cincinnati Northwest will be running side by side. Crawford qualified with a 10.9. WR Anthony Young (2013) from St Eds qualified with a 10.8. WR/DB Shelton Gibson (2013) from Cleveland Heights clocked 10.67.
Trotwood Madison has the same speed guys on the football field, as they do on the track. Cameron Burrows (2013), Reon Dawson (2013) both DB's and sophomore RB Romello Crisp are running on all three relay teams, the 4X100, the 4X200, and the 4X400.
One of the top RB's in the Class of 2013, Godwin Igwebuike from Pickerington North anchors the 4X200. Also running in 4X200 for Solon is DB Darian Hicks (2013).
One of the more underrated football players in the Class of 2012 is DB/WR Nana Kyeremeh who is running on both the 4X200 and the 4X400. Joining him on both relays is one of the better athletes in the Class of 2014, QB/DB Jalen Wells. Wells has a chance to be special. He is also running the 300 m hurdles. Jalen and Nana are representing Thomas Worthington.
Also get a chance to watch one of my favorites from the Cleveland city school Rhodes High School. Lakeith Walls from the Class of 2012 is running a leg on the 4X400.
Two sophomores from Sylvania Southview are running legs on the 4X400. WR Jernard Pinckney and DB Nate Hall both are very good young football propects. Jernard also qualified in the long jump at 23'01".
The discus could be big. LB Grant Cartwright (2013) from Olentangy Liberty qualified with a 174 throw. Two of the top offensive linemen in the Class of 2013 are throwing back to back. Fitch's Billy Price and Wayne's Lovell Peterson qualified with throws of 177'10 and 183'02 respectively. This will fun to watch. Price has also put the shot put 58'01.
Two of my favorites in the Class of 2102 are competing in field events. QB/ATH Jalin Marshall from Middletown qualified in the high jump with a jump of 6'8. Also comes in with a long jump of 22'06. Of course, I am dumb enough to believe that his overall QB skills are under-rated by everyone, including O-State. Mr. Three Sport Guy, Whitmer's Chris Wormley has qualified in the discus with a toss of 184'09 and a shot put toss of 58'03.
Of course, I have omitted some in the Divison 1 meet, and I apologize for that. I could win some football games with this talent. Later tonight, I will mention some of the football players running track in Divisions 2 and 3.