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Thursday, February 4, 2010
Superstars and super secrets

By Mark Tennis

Peyton Manning
Manning was a can't-miss prospect at Newman (New Orleans, La.) before heading to Tennessee.

High School Teammates | Top Five Prospects and Unknowns | State-by-State Participants

Top Five Players When They Were In High School

1. Peyton Manning (Colts)
He was as unanimous a national player of the year as there has been in the last 25 years.

2. Michael Hart (Colts)
A prep running back legend in New York, Hart set national records in scoring and rushing.

3. Reggie Bush (Saints)
We first saw him as a sophomore at the California state track meet. First question: Do you play football?

4. Malcolm Jenkins (Saints)
Led Jersey school to three state titles and also won state 400-meter track title.

5. Jon Stinchcomb (Saints)
He's one of the highest ranked linemen from Georgia ever.

Top Five Unknowns When They Were In High School

(And Why You Shouldn't Quit If Colleges Aren't Clamoring For You)

1. Dallas Clark (Colts)
Came from a small town in Iowa, then walked on at University of Iowa.

2. Marques Colston (Saints)
All-Pro player from Hofstra wasn't highly ranked entering the NFL, either.

3. Pierre Garcon (Colts)
We'll wave the flag for Garcon, who didn't start to show flashes of NFL ability until final year at Mount Union College.

4. Scott Fujita (Saints)
Another former Cal-Berkeley walk-on to play in the Super Bowl was 49ers' LB Gary Plummer.

5. Paul Spicer (Saints)
Two years at a junior college, two years at Saginaw Valley State and two failed attempts at making an NFL roster did not stop Spicer from having a 10-year NFL career.