Yesterday was the first day that teams could scrimmage other high schools. My plate was full. Visited Big Walnut at Dublin Scioto, Buckeye Valley at Thomas Worthington, and Kenton, Lancaster, Marion Franklin at Olentangy.
If I am evaluating linemen, I really need to see them against a different colored jersey. Practices are good for watching quarterbacks and skilled players, but watching offensive and defensive linemen, as well as linebackers, it is better to see them in games.
Tuesday I saw two offensive linemen in the Class of 2014 whom I really like. Lancaster's Kyle Trout really surprised me with his ability to adjust in space on traps and sweeps. Played left tackle and also played some guard position. All of 6'6-270, he is a bender and can run. Like his punch. Finishes blocks. With Lancaster's successful wing-t, he needs to continue to work on his feet in pass protection. Also liked Olentangy center, Andy Simms. Listed at 6'3-250, he is a natural center. Good bender. Good punch. Like his center instincts. Also gets to the second level. Like his leverage and his ability to setup to block backside. Needs to continue to improve on maintaining blocks with better feet. Both are tough competitors.
Thomas Worthington has two juniors who did not surprise me their effort and ability. CB Jalen Welles, listed at 6'1-170, covered well. Recovers well. Solid 4.5 speed. Needs to continue to improve backpedal. Good hip rotation. Anticipates well. RB Tony Harvard, listed at 5'10-180, improves everytime I see him. Excellent burst. Gets to the edge well. Deceptive 4.5 speed. Like his vision and his change of direction. Needs to continue to get bigger and stronger. Liked the continous improvement of senior Jay Smallwood. Strong hands. Burst after the catch. Like his toughness. Also will play some inside DB.
Watched a defensive lineman that I had in camp last summer. DT Logan Dziak (2014) from Buckeye Valley eventually settled in and play some solid defensive line. Excellent strength. Listed 6'3-260. Strong hands. Needs to play better pad-under-pad. Needs to get off blocks. Very explosive and finishes plays. As he learns to use his hands, he has a chance to be good.
Watched Dublin Scioto scrimmage Big Walnut. Scioto DE Kenny Coleman (2014), listed at 6'3-220, shows some promise. Liked his quickness down the LOS. Solid speed off the edge. Needs to get off blocks. Needs to get bigger and stronger. Good leverage. Lots of potential. Darius MacDonald (2014) from Scioto is a threat everytime he touches the ball. Exellent quickness. Strong inside runner. Excellent balance. Listed at 5'9-175, but plays bigger.
Kenton has reloaded and I really like the new quarterback, Grant Sherman. Listed at 6'4, he showed tremendous poise in his first varsity game. Only a junior, but has a lot of work to do, but he will be fine in time.. OLB/DE Noah Furbush (2014), listed at 6'4-205, is very athletic. Explosive. Needs to grow into his body. Like his potential. WR Justin Sawmiller (2014) is Kenton's top receiver. Excellent ball catching skills. Separates well. Solid burst. Toughness may be his strength. Moved to linebacker this season, Matt Barr (2014) looked strong. Like his LB mentality. Listed at 6'1-200, and runs down hill well. Excellent burst.
The above was a sample of my column Around the State with MSROHIO.
Each week of the season, I will do a column called "Around the State with MSROHIO." Just like last year, I will provide some insight on the players that I watched the weekend before. Because of my commitment to colleges, underclassmen will be covered alot. If a person has made a commitment, he probably will not get as much coverage. Not fair to the college that he is committed. The blog entries may not be as often. College reports are very important to me and to them.
Talked with Will Huston (2013) from Dublin Scioto. Listed at 6'1-230, Will has worked hard in the offseason to increase speed and quickness. Played some LB, but he is a true FB. Excellent blocker. Needs a burst. Power runner. Like him as an H-Back/FB at the next level.
QB Evan DeMars (2013) from Dublin Scioto has made big strides scine last season. A little bigger and stronger arm. Liked his QB presence. Do not know what level he can play, but with a really good senior year, who knows.
Seth Myers (2013) from Sunbury Big Walnut is an interesting prospect. Plays either inside DB position for Big Walnut. Listed at 6'4-205, he tested really well at my combine last March. Runs well and plays hard. Competitive. Needs to jump out on video this fall. If he keeps getting bigger, he could be an OLB at the next level. Needs senior year.
Caleb Green (2013) from Buckeye Valley is a solid prospect. Plays QB and LB. Listed at 6'0-205. Very athletic. Manages the game. Probably lacks the top end spend that D-1 college programs want. Should be an RB at the next level. True speed and change of direction might hurt his recruit level.