Thursday, February 28, 2013

Big offensive tackle getting recognized

Photo courtesy of
It may not be too hard to spot Kameron Schroeder of Consumnes Oaks-Elk Grove on the football field. If for whatever reason he can't be spotted:

1) Just look for a tall 6-foot-6 lineman or...

2) Look for an offensive tackle shoving his defender back 5-10 yards away from the play.

Schroeder isn't just one of the tallest players on the football field with his 6-foot-6 frame, he also has to be one of the quickest offensive linemen in the state with his 5.03 40-yard dash time. His speed gives him a strong get-off once the ball is snapped and enables him to lock up with his defender right away.

It's not just his quickness or tall frame that scored points for me, its also his nasty demeanor. Schroeder doesn't come off as a lineman who will pop his hands once at a defender then quit, he tries to drive his opponent either down the field or to the ground. He gets low enough to gain leverage on his defender then use his quick feet to violently drive him out.

He does get caught with wrapping his hands around a defender, which can lead to holding. One other area of concern for me is his overall strength. He's a 265-pound kid, but he reportedly bench presses 285 pounds. That may cause red flags for certain schools with wondering how his upper body strength will be when going against a faster and stronger 285-plus pound lineman at the next level. Most four-year schools will want an offensive lineman who benches well over 330 pounds. They'll likely want weight room warriors out of the linemen they're looking for.

Schroeder's athleticism, however, is what's making him noticed on the recruiting trail. His academics have also played a role in his recruitment, thanks to his 4.0 grade point average which has given him a bevy of interest from Northwestern, Harvard and Cornell. His lone offer right now is from Idaho. An off-season of developed strength and improving quickness could make him an offensive tackle in California who could explode with several offers. His size and speed already make him an intriguing offensive lineman prospect for the 2014 class.

More on Schroeder can be found here.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

All "Hale" a hip-hop legend's son on the gridiron

Photo courtesy of max preps
St. John Bosco-Bellflower defensive back Naijiel Hale has unique bloodlines from one legendary performer. However, this performer isn't a former sporting legend - it's a former renown musician in the hip-hop world.

The emerging star DB for the 2014 class is the son to late hip-hop superstar Nate Dogg.

Hale is starting to explode on the recruiting scene, with five offers now including recent ones from Cal, Arizona and Washington State. After being in my film room breaking him down, he could have more by the time the fall season comes.

He has wide receiver-like hands when the football gets thrown his side. His speed is enough to not only close in on the football, but he's a threat to take it all the way back for the pick six. His play making skills will make a defensive coordinator grin and offensive coordinators cringe.

His speed and instincts are major points for me. Even when he's not in a position to get the interception, I also like his ability to close in on ball carriers and  lower the boom. He gets around anyone who tries to block him on screen passes then halt the play. He gets low enough to lift the ball carrier then plow him to the ground. He doesn't look like a guy who will shy away from delivering the big hit.

A 170-pounds, he'll need to add bulk for the next level. I also noticed that he mainly played in a zone scheme. I'll be curious to see how he'll do stepping up at the line and jamming wide receivers in the press coverage.

Overall, this is a defensive back who's gone from an under-the-radar prospect to, potentially, one of the more sought after DB's in the state. He's one to watch between now and National Signing Day.

More on Hale can be found here.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Going underneath: Tight end play stacked in the golden state

Photo courtesy of
There's been an outburst of game-changing tight ends in the NFL, with guys like New Orleans' Jimmy Graham, New England's duo of Aaron Hernandez and Rob Gronkowski, or veterans from Dallas' Jason Witten, Atlanta's Tony Gonzalez and San Diego's Antonio Gates all helping revolutionize the position.

For the colleges seeking the next best tight end through the 2014 class, looks like California is a good area to make a stop.

One prospect already has the likes of Alabama, Florida, Norte Dame, Oklahoma and USC all after him. Another in the 805 region is generating a lot of attention from the same schools. Then there's a group of sleepers at this position too.

Time to unveil some quality tight ends in the 2014 class here in California:


Luatua (photo) is a straight freak. For a big 6-foot-4, 230-pound kid, he moves so quick and poses as a match up nightmare down in the Los Angeles area.

He's a rugged blocker who looks to knock someone to the grass with his powerful shoulders. As a receiver, he's dangerous at making the corner grabs, then going up field for the long gain or touchdown run, almost like Gronkowski or Graham. His first step when running his routes also makes linebackers covering him play catch-up.

He does hold the football away from his body, so he'll need to place an emphasis on holding the ball closer to him after the catch. Luatua, though, is already one of the more prized prospects of the 2014 class with 22 offers already on the table for him.

More on Luatua can be found here.


Dixon, who holds seven offers, is quite similar to Luatua in terms of size and speed, plus the ability to turn the corner on out routes, then burn defenses.

The 6-foot-4, 230-pound Dixon is a tough competitor who's hard to bring down, even across the middle. One thing I like about him is his knack for coming down with the football despite three defenders surrounding him. Dixon has an impressive vertical jump and will be a match up advantage in the red zone.

More on Dixon can be found here. 


Cloy, who was once at St. Paul High School in Santa Fe Springs, is an emerging tight end prospect with one offer from Colorado.

He's slightly shorter than Dixon and Luatua at 6-foot-3 and 215-pounds. He moves just as fluidly and is tough across the middle.

He does have a questionable get-off once the ball is snapped. He looked slower coming off the ball compared to Dixon and Luatua. He's not the most effective blocker right now, either. However, he has shown to be an effective decoy in the run game and his best trait is being a valuable red-zone target with his stature and small hands. A big off-season and bigger senior year could make him highly coveted.

More on Cloy can be found here.


The 6-foot-4, 215-pound Bornstein is on an Oaks Christian team who's real talent heavy heading into the 2013 season. His own set of skills is making him gain attention from recruiting coordinators and college coaches.

Bornstein is a mismatch when someone tries lining up one-on-one with him. He'll win that battle with his speed and jumping ability. His background in track and field and in the decathlon makes him one solid athlete with a high conditioning level.

He does tend to come off too high as a blocker. However, Oaks Christian may not ask him to do much blocking. With his size, hands and athleticism, it's hard to ignore him.

More on Bornstein can be found here.


Though he's listed as a wide receiver, Egurbide has enough size and bulk at 6-foot-6, 215-pounds to be a future tight end in the making.

Egurbide is freakishly fast for a player built more like an NBA small forward. He has a quick first move that can get him in front of the cornerback, then have a strong leap that allows him to out-jump 2-3 defenders surrounding him. Much like all these guys on this list, he's another red zone advantage with his soft hands. However, it was his body control that scored major points with me.

Along with his football skill set, Egurbide is also a big academic kid who's drawn interest from Harvard, Yale and Stanford.

More on Egurbide can be found here


Wolcott could emerge as a sleeper prospect at tight end, especially on a team that's becoming a sleeper powerhouse on the Central Coast.

Though Wolcott caught just 20 passes for 274 yards and five touchdowns, his height at 6-foot-5 should make him intriguing for someone at the next level. He can be an effective possession type with his size, especially after averaging over 13 yards a catch last season.

He'll need to add muscle to his 200-pound frame. He'll also need a huge off-season at different camps to get people to pay attention to this possible sleeper prospect.

Monday, February 18, 2013

The five who could thrive in the 805

Photo courtesy of the Santa Maria Times
The 805 region had a respectable National Signing Day nearly two weeks ago, but the future on the Central Coast could look even brighter for one position in the 2014 class - the quarterback.

Five signal-callers could emerge as hot commodities on the recruiting trail. One down in the Thousand Oaks area already is creating buzz, while another could be next in line at a Santa Maria school that once produced an NFL All-Pro.

Here's a look at the early 2014 forecast for the Central Coast at quarterback:


Parham (photo) comes from the same school that produced former NFL pro bowl quarterback Mark Brunell. The 6-foot-3, 225 pound Parham could just be as heavily hyped in the Santa Maria Valley.

Parham has a cannon and athleticism for the Knights. He does most of his damage in the option keeper runs and when he rolls out. He's also unafraid of contact and won't hesitate to bury his shoulder into a defender trying to bring him down.

He'll need to polish his footwork and ability to stay comfortable in the pocket during the off-season. However, in this day in age of football where dual-threat quarterbacks Russell Wilson, Robert Griffin III, Cam Newton and NFC champion quarterback Colin Kaepernick created a buzz, Parham is in good shape to become the latest dual-threat passer that could generate heavy interest.

More on Parham can be found here:


Much like Parham, Berwick is another freakish dual-threat for the Greyhounds, except he's much taller at 6-foot-4 and 189 pounds.

Berwick comes with athleticism and a gun. He's also a basketball star for Atascadero, which likely explains his athleticism.

Bulk will be needed, so will his improvement at decision-making. It'll also be interesting to see if he chooses basketball over football. He's another dual-threat quarterback in the 805 who could breakout.

More on Berwick can be found here.


Bell is another running/throwing threat, except he could be considered a wide receiver at the next level, at least according to his 24/7 Sports profile.

Looking at his quarterback film, though, he does have some traits that could make a collegiate team try him at quarterback. For one, like the other guys on this list, he's an athletic running/throwing threat. However, when he runs, he can break tackles and is hard to bring down.

Bell (6-foot-1, 195-pounds) does show a quick release. He also showed an ability to thrive in the play action roll-out passes. He'll need two things: Polishing up his drop step and being in a situation where his team allows him to throw the football more, which can convince schools that he can be considered as a quarterback. Bell could be one of the more athletically gifted quarterbacks to ever come out of Dos Pueblos.

More on Bell can be found here.


Down in the usually talent-heavy Ventura County, Workman could work his way up as a potential sleeper prospect in the 805 recruiting scene.

He's another athletic roll-out type who can damage a defense with his arm and legs. He has a cannon and is strong at selling his fakes in the play action, then finding the open man. His arm and field vision are pluses for him.

His zip on his throws will need tweaking during the off-season. He also needs to improve his quick release. I did catch him holding on to the football around five seconds. Although, he's athletic enough to escape pressure. His size at 6-feet, 180-pounds may also turn some schools away.

At the end of the day, Workman had a breakout junior year that saw 28 touchdown passes, 2,193 yards and a completion percentage of 62 percent. He's become one of the best kept secrets in Ventura County and an emerging prospect in the 805.

More on Workman can be found here.


This next and last dual threat quarterback, who comes from Jimmy Clausen's alma mater, is already getting the hype for his monster play in 2014.

The 6-foot-4, 210-pound Dawkins looks faster than the rest of this list. When he runs, he won't go down on first contact. He'll break tackles and even try to run defenders over. His cannon/zip also gives him few peers on the football field. His composure also scored major points, since he showed an ability to stay in the pocket against three rushers and still deliver a long completion. He and Dinuba High's Marcus McMaryion of the Central Section were the only quarterbacks in the California high school scene that I saw accomplish that.

Dawkins has heard from the Southeastern Conference, PAC-12 and currently holds offers from Utah and national championship game runner-up Norte Dame. With continued improvement in his abilities, Dawkins could become one of the more highly-recruited players in the 805 region.

More on Dawkins can be found here.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

The Central Coast 13

Photo courtesy of Lee Central Coast Newspapers
The 805 region has been an area that hasn't always been a renown college football factory.
However, this region produced some quality players in 2012-2013 that was talented enough to get offers from Conference USA, the PAC-12, the Football Championship Subdivision ranks, Army, or in the case of one junior college running back, the Southeastern Conference.
National Signing Day turned out to be a solid day for the Central Coast. Hope I'm not forgetting anyone, but here's the 13 players from the 805 that signed their Letter of Intent:  

Ventura College DB Lakeith Murray, Marshall

Ventura College OL Johnny Delaney, Western Kentucky

VC LB P.J Gremaud, Idaho State

VC WR Chase Smith, San Diego University

St. Bonaventure RB Zach Smith, Arizona

St. Bonaventure LB Dalton Rocha, New Mexico State

Rio Mesa-Oxnard QB Kado Brown, Army


Dos Pueblos-Goleta LB Nicolai Bornand, UNLV

Lompoc RB Lavon Coleman, Washington

Allan Hancock College-Santa Maria OL Brian Price, Texas-San Antonio

Allan Hancock College-Santa Maria RB Cameron Artis-Payne, Auburn (shown in photo)


San Luis Obispo LB Jack Ferguson, Cal Poly

Templeton OL Ross Berry, Cal Poly

This is 40 (plus four)

Photo courtesy of
 On National Signing Day, the Central Valley of California busted out a 40 - basically producing over 40 different college football signings from the junior college ranks to the prep scene.
The 559 and 661 has long been an area that's been shunned in favor of the Bay Area scene or Los Angeles. However, with well over 40 different commits in the Central Valley region, this is becoming proof that this area is finally starting to explode and gain more recognition.
Here's a list of the players that signed Letters of Intent on Wednesday. Hope no one is missing, because this list was in depth!:
Ridgeview RB Kamari Cotton-Moya, Iowa State
Centennial WR Andrew Daughtery, Air Force
Liberty RB Corbin Jountti, Northern Arizona
Stockdale RB D.J. Martin, Eastern Washington (former Cal commit)
Liberty OL/LS Cole Mazza, Alabama
Garces OL Keoni Taylor, San Jose State
Bakersfield College QB Brian Burrell (Fresno State)
Bakersfield College DB Mercy Maston (Boise State)

Mission Oak-Tulare OLB Kevin Palma, Stanford
College of the Sequoias-Visalia DB Darren Doston, Cincinnati
COS-Visalia DB Brandon Bagley, Texas Tech                                                                                                                                           COS-Visalia DL Claudell Louis, Fresno State
COS-Visalia QB Tyler Ferguson (Penn State)

Kingsburg DL Ryan Steele, Fresno State
Kingsburg OL Matt Ellen, Sacramento State
Fowler DL Kevin Sundberg, Nevada
Reedley College DE Marcus Dallas, Texas State
San Joaquin Memorial-Fresno DL Brennon Krikava, UC Davis
SJM-Fresno DL Jaylen Ruiz, Fresno State
SJM-Fresno QB Nick kinder, Dakota Wesleyan
Buchanan-Clovis DL Ben Sorensen, Sacramento State
Buchanan-Clovis ATH Billy East, Army
Clovis West OL Chad Specht, Nevada
Clovis North DL Josh Lovingood, Colorado State
Clovis North TE David Wells, San Diego State
Clovis High DB C.J Broussard, Azusa Pacific
Clovis High DB Jason Black, Air Force
Edison-Fresno DB Justin Holmes, Fresno State
Edison-Fresno QB Khari McGee, Arizona
Edison-Fresno DB Ronnie Manning, Northern Arizona
Central-Fresno LB Trammel Johnson, New Mexico Highlands
Central DB L.J Moore, Oklahoma
Central DB Hatari Byrd, Oklahoma (shown in photo)
Central DB Johnny Johnson, UCLA
Fresno City College DB Donnell Vercher, Wisconsin
FCC DB Trevor Baker-Texas San Antonio
FCC DB Duron Singleton, Missouri
FCC OL Chongo Kondolo, Nebraska
FCC OL Josiah St. John, Oklahoma
FCC WR Anthony Yancy, Angelo State
FCC LB Kyle Staples, South Dakota
FCC DL Ioane Sagapolu, Fresno State
FCC WR Larry Overstreet, Bethune-Cookman
FCC TE Zach Bowman, UC Davis