Archive for the ‘College Football Recruiting’ Category

Does high school track and field prepare linemen for big time football?

Saturday, October 23rd, 2010

Margus Hunt (92) kick block - Photo credit: Alan H. Rose / The Daily Mustang

Last year I wrote a blog about the possible connection between offensive and defensive line play and throwing the shot put and discus.  Many of last year’s highly touted collegiate linemen had throwing backgrounds dating back to their high school days.  With so many high profile linemen throwing the shot and discus I thought ESPN college analsyt and blogger, Bruce Feldman, might be interested.  Fortunately he was and this topic received greater exposure and interest.   Over the past year I’ve received some feedback about the blog and questions about linemen and throwing so I’ve decided to give it a follow-up.          

What struck me this time is the revelation that high school participation in throwing is not regional.  Division I linemen from all over the country have backgrounds in throwing.  The percentages of high school linemen from Texas (seen as a track and field haven) may be a bit higher overall but throwing is nearly as popular in Midwestern high schools.  Even with high school spring football so prominent and popular down south a lot of current SEC linemen participated in high school throwing.  You’d think with so many top notch linemen possessing track backgrounds that it wouldn’t be overlooked or deemed irrelevant by college recruiters.  However most college coaches I’ve encountered don’t seem to know much about track or care to learn.  As you’ll see below it might have paid some recruiters big dividends to learn.                 

The bigger question, in my mind, is…does ability to throw the shot and discus have any correlation to playing line?  I say yes, in a pure physical sense.  Of course player size is the key correlating factor along with development of football skills but the ability to throw indicates a wide range of physical skills related directly to line play.  It is probably a stretch to claim that track participation alone can improve football skills.  However throwing does provide athletes a competitive outlet to improve footwork, functional strength and explosive ability.  Those are all physical attributes essential to excel at line play.  Again having a large frame is nearly essential for success at any line position but possessing and enhancing the physical abilities necessary to throw certainly don’t hurt either.            

Nearly every defensive and offensive linemen I included in last year’s blog were three-sport and four-sport athletes in high school.  A good argument could probably be made regarding a connection between multi-sport participation and line play.  But if  that were true why not say that linemen playing baseball or golf is just as good a physical measuring stick as throwing the shot or discus?  Not an easy answer as participation in any additional sport is a great way for football players to keep or improve their competitive edge. Unfortunately not every sport or activity is measurable or quantifiable in a pure physical sense.  Throwing performance is measurable, quantifiable, comparable and fairly objective unlike some other sports performances which are not measurable or objective.          

It is my belief and experience most high school linemen go out for track simply for something to do or because their friends are doing it BUT there’s something that goes on during all the practices and throwing movements that probably contributes to the physical development of linemen.  Of course this is an area of much debate and isn’t a scientific demonstration but I’ll supply quite a few player anecdotes below.  Amazingly several linemen mentioned weren’t just throwers but successful track sprinters.     

Current standout Division I Defensive Linemen that participated in high school track & field 

         

Margus Hunt international discus throw – Photo credit: spikesmag.com

Billy Winn – Boise State:  A three-star athlete coming out of Las Vegas HS, Nevada.  Winn was state runner-up in the discus with a best of (171’11) and qualified for state track meet in shot put with best of (53’01).  He is known as one of the leaders of Boise State’s defense and is second on the team with 5.5 TFLs.   

Brandon Bair – Oregon:  Great story, South Fremont HS grad in Idaho, in 2002.  He’s six-foot-seven and leads the Ducks with 12 TFLs…also won Idaho state championship throwing discus (168’00) and threw shot put and ran 400 meters.  

Cameron Jordan – California:  The senior defensive lineman has quietly registered three sacks and 4.5 TFLs this season.  Jordan had 20.5 TFLs the past two seasons and perhaps extra attention and double teams have impacted his numbers.  However no argument can be made about this guy’s explosive ability and as one might expect he was a state champion discus thrower (175’07) at Chandler HS (AZ).  He also qualified for state in the shot put.   

Cliff Matthews – South Carolina:  The Gamecocks have some really freaky athletic guys along the defensive line, might have to blog about later, but Matthews has been very consistent the past few seasons while playing in the SEC with 10 sacks and 15.5 TFLs.  While he only has one sack and 3.5 TFLs this season he’s been a steady player.  He also had an impressive athletic career at Cheraw HS, in South Carolina, winning the state shot put title (54’00) and qualifying for state twice in the discus with throws over (134’00) and even high jumped (6’04).      

Christian Ballard – Iowa:  Has great size and is listed on Mel Kiper’s list of top seniors at defensive tackle.  He has the speed to match…attended Lawrence Free State HS in Kansas.  Qualified for state track meet in the 400 relay (42.82) and 200 meters (22.97).  Perhaps most impressive he ran indoor (6.80) 55 meters dash in high school.   

Da’Quan Bowers – Clemson:  Attended Bamberg-Erhardt HS in South Carolina, leads NCAA with 14.5 TFLs and 7.5 sacks.  Qualified for state meet in shot put (46’00) and ran a reported 11.5 in the 100 meters…impressive for a six-foot-four and 250lb high school athlete.   

 Dontay Moch – Nevada:  Known primarily for his great speed, attended Hamilton HS, in Nevada and was a state champion in the 100 meters (10.78), 400 relay (41.78) and 200 meters (21.84) as a junior.  Only rated two-star by Rivals but listed at 220 pounds as a high school senior his track times were incredible.  Currently tied for second nationally with 14 TFLs, may project as LB in pros.       

Drake Nevis – LSU:  Has really come on this season and leads team in sacks with five, 11.5 TFLs and third with 38 total tackles.  Threw shot put (50’09) qualifying for state meet and threw discus (147’04) at John Ehret HS in Louisiana.  

Ethan Johnson – Notre Dame:  Johnson has steadily improved the past few years with 10.5 TFLs and seven sacks.  This season he’s tied for the team lead with 3.5 sacks and helped improve the team’s defense – okay they haven’t improved a whole lot – this year.  He attended Lincoln HS, in Portland, Oregon, and threw the shot put and javelin.  Finished fourth at the state meet in shot put with a best of (54’09) and threw the javelin (176’03).   

Guy Miller – Colorado State:  Set school and Mountain West Conference records with 4.5 sacks against UNLV.  Miller graduated from Scott City HS, in Kansas, and was a successful high school thrower qualifying for the state meet in the shot put (46’01) as a junior.   

Jabaal Sheard – Pittsburgh:  Really stepped up for Pitt after the injury to Greg Romeus by leading the team this year with 8 TFLs and is tied for team lead with five sacks.  Sheard went to Hollywood Hills HS (FL) and finished fourth at state meet in the shot put (53’00) and also threw the discus.     

Ja’Gared Davis – Southern Methodist:  Sort of cheating here as Davis is a linebacker and a bit undersized at that.  However Davis ranks second in Conference-USA in sacks with six and 11 TFLs.   He attended Crockett HS, in Texas, and qualified for the Texas State Meet (not easy to do) in the 300 hurdles (38.74)  and ran the 110 high hurdles (14.75), triple jumped (46’02), high jumped (5’10) and ran a leg on the regional qualifying 400 relay (43.37).  Not bad for a linebacker…his teammate defensive end, Margus Hunt, has been mentioned on this blog before could also appear on this list – he’s pictured above – as he’s blocked NINE kicks in 20 career games!   

Jared Crick – Nebraska:  Last year was Suh’s sidekick but certainly has his own identity now and was listed on virtually every preseason all-whatever teams this year.  He’s lived up to the hype and pressure by tying for team lead in TFLs with 4.5 and tackles by defensive lineman.  Crick has been mentioned on several FTA blogs for his background as a high school thrower at Cozad HS, in Nebraska, where he was state runner-up in the shot put and threw (61’03) at B5 district meet.  Yeah he was probably an easy one to find on the recruiting trail…  

Jarvis Jenkins – Clemson:  Another massive tackle that has accumulated some serious TFL numbers in the past few years.  He currently has five TFLs this season and while he’s not a sack master and has battled some injury issues he has been productive.  Jenkins attended D.W. Daniel HS (SC) was a very successful basketball player and a regional qualifier in the shot put (46’06) and discus.   

 Jeremy Beal – Oklahoma:  One of nation leaders in TFLs with 8.5 and six sacks.  According to Mel Kiper he’s one of the five best senior defensive ends in the eyes of NFL brass.  Probably not too much surprise Beal threw the discus at Carrollton Creekview HS (TX) and was quite successful throwing (163’02) at the District 10-5A Meet in 2006.     

J.J. Watt – Wisconsin:  Just off a completely dominant performance against Ohio State with two sacks and three TFLs…and his story how he got to Wisconsin is just awesome.  Clearly part of his success stems from his high school athletic career as a four-sport athlete.  Pewaukee HS (WI) grad and state champion shot putter (59’11) as a senior…he intially attended Central Michigan as a tight end and walked-on at Wisconsin.     

Kheeston Randall – Texas:  Instrumental in Texas defeating Nebraska last week and holding Taylor Martinez to just 21 yards on 13 carries.  Currently leads stingy Texas defense with nine TFLs…attended Monsignor Kelly HS (TX) and finished third at the TAPPS 6A State Meet in the shot put (46’04) with a best of  (48’07) in 2008.   

Marcel Dareus – Alabama:  One of this most highly regarded defensive linemen in college football and MVP of last year’s BCS game was suspended for several games but hasn’t missed a beat.    Dareus attended Hayes, East Lake and Huffman HS (AL).  He played basketball while in high school and threw the shot put (41’09) and discus as a senior.   

Markus White – Florida State:  Prepared for a breakout season this year…had 10.5 TFLs last year but like the entire defense last year looked lost at times.  This year he’s second with 3.5 sacks on a team that leads the nation with 30!  White a junior college transfer attended John Leonard HS (FL) and was a regional qualifier in the shot put (46’08) and threw the discus too.       

Mike Martin – Michigan:  This guy is built like Juggernaut from X-Men…but seriously he’s the backbone of Michigan’s d-line.  Martin is second on the team with 5.5 TFLs and 2.5 sacks but more important than his stats is the ability to anchor.  He put his tremendous strength and build to good use while at Detroit Central Catholic HS, in Michigan, by winning the state heavyweight wrestling title, twice, and winning the state shot put two straight years. His best of (63’09) in the shot was just short the state record.  

Mike Daniels – Iowa:  Perhaps a lesser known name but no less productive as Daniels actually leads the Hawkeyes in TFLs with eight and sacks with three.  He’s even outshined his better known teammates like Adrian Clayborn and Karl Klug in the stats department thus far.  So he deserves to be named here.  Daniels graduated Highland Regional HS (NJ) was a three-year letterwinner in wrestling and state qualifier in the discus (143’06) and threw the shot put (58’09) at the New Jersey Meet of Champions.   

Sam Acho – Texas:  Senior defensive end is among the leaders for the Longhorns with 7.5 TFLs and 3.5 sacks and an additional four quaterback hurries.  Acho and his brother, Emmanuel (Longhorn’s starting linebacker), attended St. Mark’s HS (TX).  Sam was TAPPS state champion in the shot put (57’09) and discus (163’05).   

Stephen Paea – Oregon State:  He’s been mentioned before as Paea has been a very good linemen for several years.  His three sacks and 3.5 TFLs might not be as impressive this year but his ability to anchor the line is very impressive.  Paea’s strength is well documented (think bench press) and was a thrower at Timpview HS, in Utah.  He was state runner-up in the shot put (52’08) and state qualifier in the discus with a best of (153’03).   

Tyrone Crawford – Boise State:  For the most part Boise State’s offense has received most of the hype and credit for their team’s success but players like Crawford and Billy Winn, mentioned above, deserve some for what they do on defense.  Crawford leads the team with 6.5 TFLs and has 2.5 sacks and 19 total tackles which is saying a bunch on a defense that leads the nation against the run.  He went to high school at Central Catholic in Windsor, Ontario and was a three-sport athlete.  He was a national-caliber shot put thrower leading the country in the junior nationals category and qualified for nationals in the discus.  His best in the shot put exceeded 56-feet and over 140-feet in the discus.     

Von Miller – Texas A&M:  Speed rush defensive end set the world on fire last year  with 21.5 TFLs and 16.5 sacks but has been a bit dinged up this year and maybe not quite as effective.  At least his numbers, 4.5 TFLs, 20 tackles and two sacks, aren’t nearly what they were the first half of last season.  Perhaps the schedule is tougher this season and no dobut Miller has faced constant double teams and schemes to stop him.  Certainly can’t argue with his athleticism and speed.  Miller was a very successful hurdler in high school (Desoto, TX) running a sub-14.5 in 110 hurdles and even triple jumping and throwing the javelin at the junior olympic meet in 2005.   

 

Okay enough of that…offensive linemen next time.     

          

 

  

Multi-sport linemen, think Wisconsin’s J.J. Watt

Sunday, October 17th, 2010

If you watched last night’s Wisconsin v. Ohio State game it must have been not to notice the dominant performance by Wisconsin’s defensive end J.J. Watt.  Watt consistently beat and outhustled Ohio State’s less athletic offensive line.  In fact, he had led the game with two sacks and three TFLs against what had been considered a fairly solid Ohio State line. 

The most interesting part about all this was Watt’s struggle to get to Wisconsin.  He was lightly recruited out of high school and actually played tight end for Central Michigan as a true freshman and later walked-on at Wisconsin.  Another interesting nugget…Watt participated and excelled in five sports at Pewaukee High School in Wisconsin.  And, no shock here, he was a state champion shot putter as a senior, throwing 59’11.  College coaches and football recruiters would do well to pay attention to well-rounded high school athletes.

SEC Speed Myth debunked…really?

Monday, September 14th, 2009

Posted by Mark Branstad – Football Talent Advisors

Now that the college football season is underway I’ve started looking at more college football forums and surprisingly  I see a lot of chat about conference speed.  Truthfully I thought that was more a topic for the off-season.  Apparently the speed topic really touches a nerve with a lot of fans.  Regardless I saw a couple really interesting and for the most part well thought out posts.

The first from mgoanalytics.blogspot.com which looks at recruiting “opportunities” of each conference via state populations.  Pretty interesting stuff, I’m not sure exactly how it does or doesn’t answer whether the SEC is faster.  Seems to bash the Big 10 for having a larger proportional population to draw from yet “slower” high school athletes based on ethnic population distribuition.  Could be…I’m not a sociology or population expert. 

Another interesting post claims the speed myth is an urban legend.  The poster supports the claim using 40 yard dash times as the benchmark for speed.  Now this poster went through a lot of trouble and makes an interesting argument.  I see three major issues with this however.  First, using 40 yard dash times as a benchmark for speed is sketchy at best.  Second, apparently this 40 data was acquired from Scout combines which openly admits to using hand-held timing at their combines…um that’s a real problem.  Third, the poster sets the benchmark for speed as 4.4 / 40.  Why?  That’s extremely fast even for hand-held timing. 

I’m not sure how accurate the poster is regarding D1 football programs per state either.  I believe the poster listed Indiana as having three D1 schools, for example.  Well Indiana actually has four – Ball State, Indiana University, Purdue University and Notre Dame.  This isn’t a huge deal but looking at the calculations used in the post inaccurate counts sort of damage the conclusions drawn. 

Interesting stuff none the less.  The speed myth will probably never be completely debunked until a true benchmark of speed is agreed upon and standardized.  Any ideas about what it should be let me know?  Based on this week’s games an argument could probably be made for the Pac-10 as the speed conference.  But I’ll leave that to some other data cruncher.

Michigan’s on the Rise and it’s all about Recruiting Speed!

Sunday, September 13th, 2009

Posted by Mark Branstad – Football Talent Advisors

Michigan’s “surprising” victory over Notre Dame has many wondering if the maize and gold are back?   I wrote in a March blog the following: 

All I can say is Big Ten look out for Michigan in the coming years.  No I’m not the first or only one to say Michigan will rise soon but my reasons might be different. Michigan’s recruiting has set it apart from nearly all others, it has signed 13 “Tier 3″ athletes in the past two years and Rich Rod’s not finished yet.  No other team in the Big 10 is even close (except perhaps Ohio State)…the speed and athletic gap will continue to increase in Michigan’s favor and we’ll begin to see it this year.  Here’s the blog link…

I hope this serves notice that Rich Rod’s recruiting and implementation of his spread option will take the Big Ten by storm.  The Big Ten must begin recruiting the appropriate athletes and speed to counter or it’ll be tough to stop the Wolverines.  Clearly Michigan has found a quarterback to run their offense and that’s huge too.  But don’t discount Michigan’s speed factor like wide receiver Darryl Stonum and defensive players Donovan Warren, Troy Woolfork, Stevie Brown and Boubacar Cissoko.  Sure Notre Dame’s wideouts made big plays but they didn’t run wild like they did the week before against Nevada. 

I commented on Notre Dame’s recruiting earlier this spring and I’ll say again I don’t believe ND is recruiting enough speed (track verifiable) and pure athleticism.  I say this citing the fact of 18 recruits signed for 2009 only six participated in high school track and ONE player ran under 11.0 seconds in the 100 meter dash.  That player is Cierre Wood.  The Irish just aren’t recruiting enough speed and athleticism to beat the best teams in Division I FBS.   

When Denard Robinson becomes more involved in Michigan’s offense it’ll only get more exciting.  The Big Ten has been put on notice.

ESPN.com’s 2010 Top Rated Football Recruit

Tuesday, August 11th, 2009

Posted by Mark Branstad – Football Talent Advisors

According to ESPN.com Jackson Jeffcoat is currently the top ranked college football recruit for 2010.  Now I don’t place much stock in national recruiting and ranking lists but I believe ESPN has certainly picked a tremendous athlete in Jeffcoat.  ESPN’s JC Shurburtt has highlighted Jeffcoat’s athletic abilites…however Shurburtt forgot to mention his outstanding ability to throw the shot put and discus. 

Jeffcoat threw the shot put 55’10 and discus 165’10 as a sophomore.  By the way he’s listed at 6’05.  Wow…

District 9-5A Meet Results (2008)

DISCUS – 1. Jackson Jeffcoat, Plano West, 165-10; 2. Andrew Garrido, Plano West, 151-8½; 3. Tony Mendoza, Rich. Berkner, 150-10.

SHOT PUT – 1. Jackson Jeffcoat, Plano West, 55-10¾; 2. Travis Malone, Plano East, 52-1¾; 3. Jared Monk, Wylien 51-8½.

BYU Coach on Recruiting Sites and Star Rankings

Thursday, July 30th, 2009

Posted by Mark Branstad – Football Talent Advisors

In sort of a follow-up to a previous FTA post about the gimmicky nature of recruiting sites “star” ranking here’s BYU Head Coach Bronco Mendenhall’s take. He obviously doesn’t take much stock in the “star” ranking system, and yet another example of his lack of recruiting site faith

However another blogger brought a few interesting insights to my attention.  1) Mendenhall might not benefit from slamming the recruiting sites as much as he might gain by embracing them, BYU geographically is not generally in a recruiting hot spot. 2) Mendenhall’s claim that BYU recruits players that are the “right fit”…but what program doesn’t claim that? So that doesn’t really set them apart from other programs.  3) There’s got to be some system to rank high school players and currently there’s nothing better out there so go with what’s available.   

I’ve stated before I’d like to see both major recruiting sites, Rivals and Scout, be more transparent how their star ranking systems work.  Rivals.com, if you visit the site, is the better of the two explaining what the stars mean and what the player projection score means.  Scout appears to be more proprietary.  No doubt many of these analysts work hard and cover a lot of players nationally, but the questions about what metrics these companies use to rank all these players and determine “stars” remains pretty clouded.

Recruiting Service Gimmick

Saturday, July 11th, 2009

Posted by Mark Branstad – Football Talent Advisors

Recruiting service gimmick?  Well perhaps, according to this article, from nittanywhiteout.com.  It serves as a short narrative about the arbitrary nature of star rankings from the major college football recruiting services.  We posted a previous blog about this topic and I expressed my displeasure with the ranking standards the “stars” represent. 

Sure college recruiting is not a perfect science.  In fact, most claim successful recruiting is primarily an art and superior “gut instincts” on the part of coaches that separate the best recruiters from the average.  But why can’t more of these recruiting services apply a little more science or standardized metrics to their ranking systems? 

The recruiting rankings essentially are based on following the herd mentality…how many offers does a recruit have and what programs have offered?  Stars (ranking) increase as offers increase…isn’t that a bit backwards?  Shouldn’t these services set the standard instead of reshuffling the rankings based on offer totals and prestige?  Shouldn’t the reshuffling occur because of what the players actually did or didn’t do on the field?  Ultimately these ranking are all about projection and why would projection change based almost entirely upon what college offered a scholarship? 

Unfortunately the combine “camps” and so forth play too large a role and if recruits aren’t seen there then their rankings suffer.  Again, not very objective or scientific.  I get it that recruits sometimes perform extraordinarly well at combines and camps.  Where are the evaluation standards behind the performances at these things?  I mean one analyst claims a kid ran a great 40 another claims it was just an okay 40.  One kid has “great feet” according to an analyst and the other analyst says the kid’s feet are not D1 caliber.   

But those are the rankings for you in the world of the recruiting services…gimmick?  Maybe that’s a little strong.  Is it all about hype?  Pretty much.

Track Throwers = College Football Big-Time Tackles Part 2

Tuesday, June 9th, 2009

Posted by Mark Branstad – Football Talent Advisors

A few months ago I blogged about several of college football’s best lineman and their high school backgrounds throwing the shot put and discus.  Well, today I read an article (referenced by Bruce Feldman / ESPN.com) mentioning Texas high schools as a hot-bed for offensive tackles and saw a list on www.mockingthedraft.com of the top 10 senior and top 5 junior defensive tackles in college football. 

Bruce Feldman believed at least one player was left off the list: “Can’t say I disagree with that pick at this point, although I would have had Georgia’s Jeff Owens above a bunch of these guys in the top 10 DTs”, claimed Feldman. 

Regardless of whether or not I agreed with the list of names or NFL projections from the site or players mentioned in the article, I was struck by the number of players that threw the shot and discus in high school…and did it well!  Of the 15 tackles listed on www.mockingthedraft.com 12 threw the shot put and or discus in high school, as well as all four offensive tackles named in the article by Mike Detillier.  What about the three d-tackles that did not throw?  Well, one was a state champion heavyweight wrestler in New York, the other two were individual standouts in baseball and basketball.   

As always here’s the breakdown:  (All listed heights and weights according to various recruiting site sources)

Four Senior Offensive Tackles:  And yeah these guys were huge in high school…

Russell Okung / Oklahoma State – (6’05 250) Fort Bend George Bush HS – 155’09 discus

Trent Williams / Oklahoma – (6’05 290) Longview HS – 45’06 shot put

Ciron Black / Louisiana State – (6’05 315) Robert E. Lee HS – 54’05 shot put

Adam Ulatoski / Texas – (6’06 270) Southlake Carroll HS – 45’09 shot put

Ten Senior Defensive Tackles

Ndamukong Suh / Nebraska – (6’04 278) Grant HS, OR. – 61’09 shot put state champion

Terrence Cody / Alabama – (6’05 365) Riverdale HS, FL. – 151’07 discus and 47’00 shot put

DeMarcus Granger / Oklahoma – (6’03 315) Kimball HS, TX. – 173’10 discus state runner-up and 55’04 shot put 

Arthur Jones / Syracuse – (6’03 280) Union-Endicott HS, NY. – 275lb. wrestling state champion

Vince Oghobaase / Duke – (6’06 295) Alief Hastings HS, TX. – 154’00 discus

Geno Atkins / Georgia – (6’01 270) St. Thomas Aquinas HS, FL. – 59’01 shot put state runner-up and 158’07 discus

D’Anthony Smith / Louisiana Tech – (6’03 311) Pickering HS, LA. – 52’03 shot put 2X state champion

Dan Williams / Tennessee – (6’01 310) Memphis East HS, TN. – 53’00 shot put 3rd place state meet

Jared Odrick / Penn State – (6’05 303) Lebanon HS, PA. – 56’10 shot put 4th place state meet

Ekom Udofia / Stanford – (6’01 288) Chapparral HS, AZ. – 50’03 shot put 6th place state meet

Five Junior Defensive Tackles:

Gerald McCoy / Oklahoma – (6’04 305) Southeast HS, OK. – 55’04 shot put state runner-up

Marvin Austin / North Carolina – (6’03 291) Ballou & Coolidge HS, District of Columbia – 41’10 shot put , 7.00 55 meter dash (faster than many high school skill position players), 12.50 100 meter dash impressive for d-lineman

Brian Price / UCLA – (6’02 285) Crenshaw HS, CA. – Standout baseball player

Lawrence Marsh / Florida – (6’05 260) Josey HS, GA. – Standout basketball player, read somewhere he threw shot and discus but no evidence…

Jarvis Jenkins / Clemson – (6’05 308) Daniel HS, SC. – 46’06 shot put

Honorable Mention Senior Tackles:  (The first one is for Bruce Feldman, the second…well I saw him throw as a high schooler)

Jeff Owens / Georgia – (6’02 263) Plantation HS, FL. – 52’10 shot put 3rd place state meet and 145’06 discus

Sam Young / Notre Dame – (6’08 302) St. Thomas Aquinas HS, FL. – 59’01 shot put state champion and 164’06 discus

Indiana High School Track and Field State Meet

Saturday, June 6th, 2009

Posted by Mark Branstad – Football Talent Advisors

Friday, June 6th:  Indiana High School State Track & Field Meet – IU Bloomington, Indiana

Great day for a track meet!  Many awesome performances.  Below I’ll plug the performances from this year’s D1 football signees and a few 2010-2012 football prospects.  There were not as many football signees that participated in the 100 & 200 as past year’s.  But certainly there’s no lack of quality performances in other events.  In particular, Duwyce Wilson  (Indiana football signee) won the long jump and Roderick Smith (2010 RB prospect F.W. Harding) ran a leg on the state runner-up 4×100 relay (41.52).  Sophomore Kris Harley (2011 DT prospect Warren Central) threw the shot put 57’05 for 3rd place!

State Track Meet 2009:

Names (no particular order)

Class of 2009:

Duwyce Wilson (CE – WR) – 22’10 long jump state champion ; 4×100 (42.21) 6th place

Tanner Riley (CG – WR/RB) – 15’00 pole vault 10th place

Joe Rippe (Carmel – DB) – 21’08 long jump 9th place

Earnie Morris (BS – WR) – 21’05 long jump 13th, 11.05 100 18th, 22.18 200 9th dnf finals, 4×100 (44.05) 25th place [E. Illinois signee]

Devon Davis (CE – DE/LB) – 4×100 (42.21) 6th place

Eric Williams (WC – RB) – 4×100 (42.02) 4th place

Luke Swift (CG – WR) – 14.28/110 high hurdles 3rd place ; 38.45/300 intermediate hurdles 5th place

Nick Turner (Spt. – RB) – 4×100 (43.16) 13th place

Cory Phillips (Hammond Morton – QB) – 4×100 (43.44) 17th place [Indiana State signee]

Jordan Stepp (BD – DT) – 169’05 discus 4th place ; Scratch shot put

Matt Krempel (CN – OT) – 56’03 shot put 7th place

*Robbie Piper (PC – OL) – 48’08 shot put 23rd place [Kentucky Wesleyan College Division 2 signee]

*Ryan Pervine (LC – RB) – 173’11 discus 2nd place [attending a JUCO to play football]

*Nick Driskill (Southwood – DB/RB) – 50’09 shot put 19th place [Mt. Union Div.3]

Class of 2010:

Bryce Kiser (Pioneer – RB) – 51’07 shot put 17th place

Erik Willis (Richmond – DB) – 4×100 (42.37) 8th place

Anthony Miller (CE – DB) – 4×100 (42.21) 6th place

Roderick Smith (FW Harding – RB) – 4×100 (41.52) 2nd place 

Toba Omotinugbon (Jeffersonville – LB) – 145’05 discus 18th place

Class of 2011:

Kris Harley (WC – DT) – 57’05 shot put 3rd place

Anthony Bradley (North Central – QB) – 55’06 shot put 8th place

Jeffery Harmon (Pike – WR) – 4×100 (42.17) 5th place

Eric Robinson (WC – DB) – 10.87 100 10th place ; 4×100 (42.02) 4th place

Jordan Gater (East Noble – QB / DB) – 10.82 100 prelims, 10.91 9th place ; 21.95 200 prelims , 22.46 6th place

Class of 2012:

Jake Moran (Franklin Co. – RB) – 21’10 long jump 8th place

Langston Newton (Carmel – OL /TE) – 132’03 discus 24th place

College Football’s Fastest Players 2009 Edition

Monday, June 1st, 2009

Posted by Mark Branstad – Football Talent Advisors

There’s always plenty of speed to be found in college football and this year is no exception.  Heisman Pundit has put out his annual list of the college game’s fastest players and does a great job explaining how and why using track data is important to ranking his list.  2009’s fastest collegiate players…

Notice a few guys on the Pundit list are incoming freshman…speed is certainly on the way.  There’s also a couple players I think that could be added to the list given the criteria.  Here goes:

Julio Jones – (WR Bama) 24’02 long jump and 47’05 triple jump state champ

DeVier Posey – (WR Ohio State) 47.41 / 400 meter dash state champ ; throw in 21.86 / 200 and 10.87 / 100

Lamaar Thomas – (WR Ohio State) 6.45 / 55 meter dash indoor state champ ; 10.63 / 100 state champ

Darryl Stonum – (WR Michigan) 1:26.84 / 4×200 relay

D.J. Monroe – (CB Texas) 10.41 / 100 meter dash state champ ; 40.93 / 4×100 relay state champ

Aaron Hester – (CB UCLA) 3:09.59 / 4×400 relay state champ

Cyrus Gray – (RB Texas A&M) 10.76 / 100 meter dash

Derrick Hall – (RB Texas A&M) 24’01 / long jump ; 6’09 / high jump ; 10.51/100 meter dash ; 41.29 / 4×100 relay