Last night's 7on7 gathering at Mansfield's Arlin Field consisted of some of the best football programs in Ohio. Mansfield Senior head football coach Chioke Bradley did a tremendous job bringing the teams together. Cleveland Glenville, Trotwood Madison, Akron Buchtel, Dayton Dunbar, Westerville North, and area team, Ontario, and host Mansfield Senior made up the field.
Westerville North is in a rebuilding state, but I liked their senior LB Andy Struttman. Listed 6'1-225. Runs well, but will have to continue to work on flexibility. Tough competitor. More valuable in pads. Junior QB Jake Downs was solid, but I will need to see him in pads. Also, watched one of my msrohio combine guys. Brandon Fenton (2015) guessin 6'0-175, played CB. Excellent 40 speed (4.5) and ran a 7.2 L-cone at the combine. Needs to continue to get stronger and improve recovery speed, but I am looking forward to seeing him this fall. Like his potential.
Dayton Dunbar also played a lot of younger guys. Two underclass men that I liked were QB Lamar Florence and WR Terrence Landers. This was the second time that I watched Lamar (2015). Solid release. Needs to improve feet. Listed 6'1-183. Needs to improve reading coverage. Needs a lot of reps to gain consistency with footwork and throwing motion. One to watch this fall. A sleeper could be sophomore WR Terrence Landers. Being recruited as a basketball player, but did some nice things as a receiver last night. Listed 6'4. Excellent hands. Needs to improve route running, but that should come. Need to see him in game competition, but he could a top receiver his senior year.
Ontario seniors Cameron Mack(LB) and Jordan Campbell(RB/DB) ran well, but did not see as much in 7on7 game. Both competed well.
Glenville's top seniors were visiting Louisville. Lattimer, Smith, and Simpson were three of the five missing. QB Quan Robinson(2014) continues to improve his feet and throwing motion. Can make big plays, but needs to more consistent. Plays tall. This spring Bedford Chanel closed their doors, and senior Aaron Ivory enrolled at Glenville. A former QB who now works as a WR and FS. Athletic. Guessin 6'0-185. Excellent hands and can separate. Needs to improve top end speed, but is a scholarship player. Also liked Glenville's sophomore QB Marcus Drish. Spins it. Really athletic. Excellent release. Good feet. Hopefully, he grows a few inches.
One of the potential top players at Glenville did not dress out, but was in the stands. RB Davon Anderson just moved in from Summerville, SC to spend his senior year living with his dad. Listed 5'11-195. Passes the eyeball test and put up really good numbers at Summerville. Like his attitude, but, of course, I have not seen him play. Coach Ginn is really high on him.
Ricky Powers, head coach at Buchtel told me that they were playing a lot of young players. QB Chris Davis has always been a favorite of mine. Improved over the evening, but I worry about his shortness. Really like the potential of sophomore RB Marquis Sams. Listed 5'10-185. Caught the ball out of the backfield, but, of course, could not show his running ability last night. WR Deric Rucker (2015) did some good things. Catches the ball over the middle. Needs to improve speed. Needs to improve body control. Listed 6'1-175. One to watch improve.
Watching Trotwood last night, I spent more time watching and talking with some of the younger players. For Kei Beckham(2015), he continues to look better and better. Taller and thinner than last year. Improve his speed. Like his hips. Needs to improve recovery speed. If he cannot play corner at the next level, he will move to FS. Corner looks good. Was able to spend some time with Ryan Lucas (2015) - slot receiver. Fast. Good body control. Needs to get upper body stronger. Needs to be more physical when separating. Talked with RB Harrison Johnson, another 2015 guy. Listed 5'9, but I like his quickness and change of direction. 7on7's are not for RB's. One to keep an eye on is freshman TE Christopher Lewis. Listed 6'1-230. Really athletic. Runs well for size and age. Maybe not a TE, but should a top guy in three years. QB Messiah deWeaver (2016) continues to improve as a QB. Feet are improving. Needs work on weight balance. Good release. Getting better at reading coverage. Needs reps to be more consistent. Only a sophomore.
Three Trotwood skill position seniors really need to step this fall. WR Kendric Mallory has always been a potential excellent receiver. 6'2 and can make big plays. Problem - needs to more focused on every play. Needs to play harder more often. Potential is there. RB Ashton Jackson is listed 5'11-185. Maybe bigger. Needs to stay healthy. Needs to be a force inside the tackles. Like his burst and vision. Verondtae Wilkinson has been playing DE for three years, but moves to Mike LB this fall. Powerful. Excellent closing speed. Needs to play every down. Needs to practice harder. Needs to improve change of direction. Definitely a physical player, but needs to improve work habits. All three are scholarship guys, but need to separate themselves from the pack this fall.
Just watched Mansfield Senior last weekend at Bucyrus. QB Jalen Reese is tall and continues to improve his QB skills. Needs to improve arm strength. Really like his continued improvement. Excellent leader. Chekiah Washington looked strong as an inside DB. Changes direction well. Tough run stopper. Needs to continue to work on burst. Need to see more of Tyquan Vickers.
Overall, the 7on7 games at Mansfield were good for me. At a 7on7 tournament, I just need to see players in person. I like to see how they handle themselves both on and off the field. I like to watch how they compete. I like to establish or build on a relationship. Playing in shorts/t-shirts affords me that chance. Somehow "playing in pads" can improve the positives or negatives for a lot of high school players.