Thursday, April 24, 2008
Boyd's maturity helps sort out recruiting madness
By Tom Luginbill
Jheranie Boyd, 6-foot-2, 180 pounds
ESPN 150 Watch List wide receiver
Ashbrook (Gastonia, N.C.)
There are many high school football prospects out there who love the spotlight, crave the attention and get caught up in the hype created by the internet, media and coaches' sales pitches. Wide receiver Jheranie Boyd is not one of those kids. In fact the ability to stay levelheaded throughout the process is what makes him unique and keeps him grounded.
"He is a very humble kid, very respectful. This whole recruiting process has not changed him one bit," said his coach Mike Briggs.
Things have gotten pretty hectic in the last five weeks or so as Boyd's stock began to rise, with college recruiters flocking to Ashbrook High School to lure him to their respective schools.
The thing that stands out about him when talking with him is he conducts himself like a 25-year-old man with a college degree, so it is easy to see why coaches are coveting him for his high character as well as his athleticism.
"Jhay [Boyd] is a leader and he is just taking it all in stride right now. He's trying to absorb the personalities of the different coaches and weed through what's real and what's not. He is representing this high school and himself very well," said Briggs.
On the field, it's Boyd's speed (his 40 recently timed in the mid-4.4's) coupled with his size catching the eyes of recruiters throughout the SEC and ACC among others, though he points to his hops.
"I truly have a 44-inch vertical leap and this gives me a huge edge, but I'm still improving as a route runner each and every day," said Boyd.
"He's like a sponge and rarely makes the same mistake twice when coached to do something," said Briggs. "Each day he comes back improved and ready to absorb more."
As a junior, Boyd hauled in 47 passes for 1,151 yards and 12 touchdowns. An awesome 24 yards per reception gives you and idea of his big-play ability, and his 7th-place 200m finish as a sophomore eludes to his speed.
His summer plans include attending camps and combines and researching more about the schools that interest him, but he truly does not have a leader yet -- he's taking his time. As the offers continue to pile up, expect that summer of his to be pretty busy.
Boyd's Scouts Inc. Evaluation
There is an awful lot to like about this guy. Boyd has very good size and excellent top-end speed and he's a playmaker. He shows very good awareness and feel for the position. Is a sound route runner for a younger player. Has a feel for coverages and is competent versus both zone and man coverage. Plays very hard and works at it.
Size is every good, has the frame to really muscle up and shows very good acceleration and the ability to make something happen after the catch. Reaches top speed quickly, is smooth and fluid both in and out of his cuts and also after the catch. Moves like a smaller wide receiver in terms of quickness and acceleration.
He shows excellent body control on the jump ball and the sideline awareness wanted downfield. Adjusts extremely well to poorly-thrown passes and is always attacking the football -- is a hand catcher, not a body guy. He could develop into a legitimate vertical threat because of his size/speed combination. Shows great confidence in his ability to catch the football whether he is covered or running wide open, his focus is very strong.
The thing a bit odd about Boyd's running style is he runs on his heels, giving him an awkward appearance when in the open field. He is not overly physical yet, but he could be because he is tough and will work the middle of the field, but time in the weight room will really help him.
Overall, Boyd is just a really good football player with good instincts and awareness for the position.
Tom Luginbill is the national director of recruiting for Scouts Inc. Luginbill is a college football and recruiting studio analyst for ESPNU.