Sunday, March 1, 2015

On the golden state recruiting trail: JUCO athlete gets bombarded with offers

Lorenzo Terry of Los Angeles Harbor College has gone from un-recruited high school athlete to an emerging prospect in the junior college scene, after coming home to four scholarship offers in one day (photo courtesy of ESPN.com).
February 20, 2015 was a landmark day for Lorenzo Terry of Los Angeles Harbor College.

Terry, who lines up at defensive back and returns kicks for L.A. Harbor, came home to four scholarship offers - all in one day.

The former West Valley (Hemet) star said he was offered by Old Dominion, Idaho, Middle Tennessee State and Rhode Island.

Terry, who wasn't offered a scholarship while in high school, said that the recent scholarship pledges are "a huge relief."

Said Terry: "I've worked so hard in high school and I didn't get the exposure everyone else had because of where I played. But I didn't give up and I prayed. And now it's finally happening."

Terry adds that Old Dominion is his front runner, but said he's not rushing a decision and will continue to let the recruiting process play out.

UNLV GETS SOME VISITORS

Las Vegas didn't just get athletes competing in the 2015 Pylon 7-on-7 tournament from Feb. 28-March 1, but the town's NCAA Division I university had plenty of visitors too.

High school athletes from the Class of 2016-19 got a chance to tour the University of Nevada-Las Vegas campus. Club teams like DB Guru (Fresno), the Bod-E-Shop (Fresno/Clovis) and the Frat Boyz (Southern California) received an opportunity to try on UNLV football jerseys, meet the Rebel coaching staff and roam around the Mountain West Conference campus.

OFFERS PILING UP FOR SERVITE STAR

Keyon Riley of traditional Orange County powerhouse Servite (Anaheim) ended his February with scholarship offers filling his mailbox.

Riley, Class of 2016, received pledges from San Diego State, Oregon State and Washington during the week of Feb. 24-27.

The 6'2" Riley - who doubles as a cornerback and strong safety - also holds an offer from Colorado State.












Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Rising star watch: Marqel McCoy

Marqel McCoy of Berean Christian (Walnut Creek) has shown his size, athleticism and versatility during Friday night games and most recently, the Blue-Grey combine (photo contributed). 
In an area known for strong wide receiver play, Marqel McCoy has emerged as a wideout to watch in the East Bay of California for the Class of 2016.

McCoy - who attends Berean Christian High School in Walnut Creek - has put together the kind of resume that earned him a spot in the Blue-Grey Northern California regional combine in February.

And it was the aftermath of his performance at the combine that's gotten McCoy to be a prospect to watch. Here's a closer look:

WHAT TO LIKE: He has the height (6-foot-3) that a lot of colleges look for in a receiver. But it's really his athleticism and body control during a catch that makes him stand out. McCoy shows excellent eyes and concentration when hauling a reception. He does a consistent job of extending out his hands either above his head or in front of his chest for the grab. He adjusts well to passes that are away from his body. He's got a smooth plant and cut with his feet that fools defensive backs. Tough to bring down after the catch. He's physical at the line and sheds jams in one second. He's dominated one-on-one coverages. Defensively, he reads quarterbacks well and gets in a good position for the interception. Also a hustle player on special teams who'll either wrap and roll a ball carrier for the tackle or recover the onside kick.

WHAT TO BUILD ON: On offense, I'll be interested in seeing if he can make catches low to the ground on a consistent basis. As a safety, I need to see how he takes his angles especially during plays that are away from him. He'll need to add muscle to his 190-pound frame down the road.

OVERALL: McCoy might be the biggest sleeper in a usually talent-rich area of the Golden State. Notable East Bay products include Isaiah Langley (USC), J.J. Koski (Cal Poly) and Darrell Adams (Azusa Pacific). He's made the kind of catches that we see on Sunday's from Kelvin Benjamin of the Carolina Panthers or A.J. Green of the Cincinnati Bengals. 

More on McCoy can be found here

GPA: 3.86 (cumulative 3.68)
WINGSPAN: 6'9"
40-YARD TIME: 4.6 seconds
VIDEO FROM THE BLUE-GREY COMBINE: 






Thursday, February 19, 2015

Rising star watch: Quincy Jountii

Quincy Jountii should see an increase in touches while in the Liberty (Bakersfield) backfield this fall. The Class of 2016 prospect could also join his older brother Corbin in the NCAA Division I ranks with a huge spring recruiting season and senior year (photo courtesy of Hudl). 
If anyone thinks Liberty of Bakersfield will see a dip in offensive production this fall because of the loss of Anthony Mariscal, know this: you lose one, you gain more playmakers.

Running back Quincy Jountii is one of the them on a team with four potential NCAA Division I recruits (quarterback Jordan Love, athlete Matthew Hubble and linebacker/tight end Krys Barnes - who currently holds 14 scholarship offers - are the other prospects).

The Patriots' running back got his feet wet last season with 785 all-purpose yards on 96 touches and 10 touchdowns. Now that Mariscal is preparing for his next chapter at the University of Arizona, Jountii gets his crack at running wild on defenses; something that his older brother Corbin (now at Northern Arizona) used to do when he was at Liberty.

Here's a closer look at the younger Jountii brother:

WHAT TO LIKE: Jountii is built like a college football running back at 5-foot-11, 210-pounds and he moves like a potential NCAA DI recruit. Jountii has elusiveness and a smooth plant and cut with the football in his hand. He's an excellent change-of-direction running back who can run toward the sidelines then turn up the field for a longer gain. He's got power and can carry a pile of defenders on his back while refusing to stop his legs. His receiving ability is especially potent. Jountii can stretch the field from the slot position and has shown to be an extra deep threat for the Pats' passing attack. He's come down with the difficult catches between two defenders or across the middle of the field. He can also take the short throw from the middle and rumble into the end zone. He doesn't go down right away after contact is made.

WHAT TO BUILD ON: Even though he's got solid speed for a player his size, he can always build on the skill. I'll need to see his ability to step up and block especially against blitzes. He has a tendency to run tall and can work on keeping himself low to the ground while he runs.

OVERALL: The Central Section is always running back heavy and Jountii adds to an already growing list of monster backs in that area. It's his receiving ability that got me glued to his film. He looks like a young Shane Vereen of the New England Patriots because of his versatility as a runner and receiver.









Thursday, February 12, 2015

Rising star watch: Jamal Hicks

Jamal Hicks (Narbonne of Harbor City) doubles as a hard-hitting free safety on the football field and top scoring option for the Gauchos' basketball team (photo contributed). 
Narbonne (Harbor City) two-sport star Jamal Hicks has had a February to remember.

On Feb. 4, he came home to his first football scholarship offer from Colorado State. Then on Feb. 11, he led the Gauchos to an undefeated league season on the basketball court (12-0 mark).

But it's his football skills that has Cali Gold Mine convinced the gridiron will be his calling.

After watching his film, he could be a future Kam Chancellor for someone's secondary. Here's a closer look:

WHAT TO LIKE: He not only has imposing size at 6-foot-3, 185-pounds, but Hicks provides an intimidating aggressive presence in the Gauchos' defensive backfield. He reacts quick to plays across the middle, then lowers his shoulder for the highlight-reel blow. He gets in good position to swat down passes or grab the interception when offenses attack his side. Also valuable against the run because he'll take his angles and collide against a ball carrier.

WHAT TO BUILD ON: I need to see his ability to blitz, especially how he handles one-on-one blocks and if he can effectively shed blockers. He tends to stop his feet when making a tackle. He'll need consistency with keeping his legs moving after contact is made when attempting and finishing a tackle.

OVERALL: So far, Hicks is a sleeper in Los Angeles County with just one offer. That could change, though, with a big off-season and senior campaign.

More on Hicks can be seen here.

Stats: 62 tackles, 15 pass break-ups and 5 interceptions.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Rising star watch: Eric Barriere

La Habra quarterback Eric Barriere (No. 3) has not only led the Highlanders to consecutive 5-0 seasons in the Freeway League, he's frustrated defenses with his arm and leg (photo contributed). 
In the Freeway League during the last two seasons, one undersized quarterback has shown that he's on the fast lane to stardom.

Eric Barriere of La Habra High School doesn't just escape the oncoming traffic of defenders who are trying to halt him. The 6-foot, 185-pound quarterback uses his speed and arm to swerve through defenses. He's led La Habra to back-to-back undefeated seasons in the Freeway League and is 10-0 against the league slate.

In the always talent-heavy Southern California region, how does Barriere stack up with some of the best Southern California quarterbacks in the Class of 2016? Time to weigh in:

WHAT TO LIKE: I love his ability to make plays when things break down. Either Barriere will tuck the ball and gain 20 yards, or he'll evade defenders during a heavy rush and find an open receiver deep down the field. He's a dual-threat who can run the pistol and read option schemes with precision because of his athleticism. I've been equally impressed with his composure. Even if five or seven defenders are chasing him, Barriere will run circles around the rush, stay behind the line of scrimmage, then rifle the ball to an open man for the long passing play. He shows solid vision while in the pocket.

WHAT TO BUILD ON: He'll need to polish his footwork when taking three to five step drops. Needs to establish consistency with staying in the pocket. I'll also need to see his ability to dart the football into tight windows regardless if he's facing single man or double coverage.

OVERALL: This quarterback class is heavy on talent, especially in So Cal with Santa Margarita Catholic's K.J. Costello (15 scholarship offers), Tesoro (Santa Margarita) High's Devin Modster (four offers including Arizona and Arizona State) and Camarillo's Jake Constantine (interest from Clemson, Fresno State and UCLA) in that region. Barriere, though, could emerge as the sleeper among the So Cal quarterbacks in the Class of 2016. He may be undersized, but teams could be passing on a potential Russell Wilson if they don't show interest in Barriere.

More on Barriere can be found here.

Stats from 2014: 3,021 total yards of offense (2,452 passing), 26 passing touchdowns, 8 rushing touchdowns, 5 interceptions.

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Rising star watch: Matthew Hubble

Matthew Hubble of Liberty (Bakersfield) gave the Patriots a physical receiving presence during the 2014 season (photo contributed). 
Colleges have made frequent visits to Liberty High in Bakersfield to check in on who's rising for the Patriots.

Class of 2016 Linebacker Krys Barnes is already a hot commodity with 10 scholarship offers, including pledges from USC, Oregon and Washington of the PAC-12. But could Matthew Hubble also get the same amount of collegiate love?

The 6-foot-1, 210-pound Hubble is worth a look in the Pats' 2016 class. Here's why:

WHAT TO LIKE: Hubble brings a physical identity to LHS's high-octane offense. After the catch, he'll either truck a defender with his shoulder or carry a pack of defenders on his back as he gains more yards. He won't go down on first contact. For a big target, he's got smooth feet and gets out of his breaks well. He's got soft hands and shows tremendous concentration with his catches, especially when facing double coverage. Also plays defense and has a solid nose for the football.

WHAT TO BUILD ON: Defensively, he's come up too high on his tackles and wraps up at the chest area. He has to be consistent with getting lower body leverage on a ball carrier. Offensively, I'll need to see how he does against press man because he's done his damage against zone coverage.

OVERALL: I like Hubble's intangibles on offense because of his physical play. He may not have the height, but his frame and capability to break tackles makes him an intimidating presence to bring down. Liberty has been a good producer of college football talent over the years. Hubble should get plenty of love during this upcoming recruiting season.


Wednesday, February 4, 2015

805 rising

Nico Lima of Camarillo signed his letter of intent with San Jose State on Wednesday, Feb. 4, making him among 22 Central Coast football players signing on to a four-year college's football program for the class of 2015 (photo by Lorenzo J. Reyna). 
Two years ago, the Central Coast of California only had 13 players signing a national letter of intent to extend their football career at the college level.

On Wednesday, Feb. 4, the number rose to 22 prep stars.

From Paso Robles to Newbury Park, the 805 had a respectable National Signing Day with football prospects signing on with the likes of Oregon, USC, Arizona, Cal, Nebraska, San Jose State, Wake Forest, etc.

Here's who signed a LOI today (hope I'm not forgetting anyone):

PASO ROBLES

Bailey Gaither, athlete, San Jose State
Josh Oliver, tight end/defensive end/outside linebacker, San Jose State
Jonathan Baldwin, TE, Northern Arizona

ATASCADERO

Ethan Hicks, running back/linebacker, UC Davis

SAN LUIS OBISPO

David Chellsen, offensive lineman, Cal Poly

ST. BONAVENTURE (VENTURA)

Ricky Town, quarterback, USC
John McGill, TE, Sacramento State
Lavan Alston, wide receiver, Nebraska
Nick Capella, OL, Air Force

CAMARILLO

Nico Lima, TE, San Jose State
Bryce Arnold, LB, Black Hills State
Jonathan Williams, LB, South Dakota School of Mines

CALABASAS

Will Tuihalamaka, OL, San Diego State

NEWBURY PARK

Zach Okun, OL, Oregon
Darick Holmes, WR, Arizona

WESTLAKE

Quincy Bennett, LB, UC Davis
Patrick Mekari, defensive lineman, Cal
Fred Wise, OL, Southern Utah
Andre Baccellia, WR, Washington

OAKS CHRISTIAN (WESTLAKE)

Trevor Howard, DL, Cal
Andre Chevalier, LB, Holy Cross
Alex Bachman, WR, Wake Forest