Tuesday, August 28, 2012
Updated: August 31, 10:15 AM ET
Prime time preps
A trio of games highlight the ESPN High School Football Showcase airing on ESPN's family of networks this Labor Day weekend.
It all starts on Friday with Loganville (Ga.) Grayson, which is led by No. 1 overall ESPN 150 recruit Robert Nkemdiche and is ranked No. 1 in the ESPN 25 Power Rankings, taking on No. 6 Miami Central at 7:30 p.m. ET on WatchESPN.com. The game will be later shown at 11:30 p.m. ET on ESPNU.
Here's a breakdown of the top recruits from each game this weekend.
No. 1 Grayson vs. No. 6 Miami Central
Friday at 7:30 p.m. ET on WatchESPN.com and 11:30 p.m. ET on ESPNU
No. 1 GRAYSON (1-0)
DL Robert Nkemdiche, Class of 2013
The No. 1 prospect in the country, Nkemdiche saw constant double- and triple-teams last week versus McEachern, and the Indians used zone reads to try and keep the 6-foot-4, 275-pound defensive end from wreaking havoc in the backfield. The Clemson commit was still able to make four tackles and three quarterback hurries, as well as contribute 57 yards and a touchdown at running back. He mentioned plans to take official visits to a couple schools out West, including Oregon and USC.
Other Top Recruits
|No. 1 recruit Robert Nkemdiche can be seen on WatchESPN.com and ESPNU on Friday night.|
RB Wayne Gallman, Class of 2013
The 6-0, 190-pound athlete had seven carries for 59 yards and a touchdown last week, and the Clemson four-star commit made five tackles on defense as well.
DB David Kamara, Class of 2013
The 5-10, 185-pound defensive back, who is also committed to Clemson, made 53 tackles, four interceptions and two forced fumbles as a junior.
DB Ryan Carter, Class of 2013
Carter had five tackles and a key interception in the second half of last week's win over McEachern, returning it 77 yards to the Indian's 8-yard line. Arkansas State, ECU, Ole Miss, Southern Miss and Tulane have offered the 5-10, 175-pound defensive back.
DE Jack Banda, Class of 2013
Banda, who played defensive end for the first time as a junior, made more than 70 tackles and had 14 sacks last year while also playing at tight end. The 6-3, 225 prospect committed to Arizona over FIU and UNC-Charlotte.
LB Zach Barnes, Class of 2013
The 6-3, 225-pound prospect, who committed to Tennessee this summer after earning an offer in camp, had two tackles and a sack versus McEachern last week.
DB Kasey Gaines, Class of 2013
The 5-11, 160-pound senior, who recently earned his first FBS offer from Penn State, blocked a 30-yard field goal attempt last week versus McEachern.
RB Jordan Germany, Class of 2013
The 5-10, 195-pound FBS sleeper had 81 rushing yards and a touchdown last week versus McEachern.
No. 6 MIAMI CENTRAL (0-0)
RB Joseph Yearby, Class of 2014
The 5-9, 190 Yearby rushed for more than 2,000 yards in his sophomore season, leading Miami Central to the Class 6A state championship game. The junior combines above-average speed with incredible vision and toughness in between the tackles. Yearby will participate in the 2014 Under Armour All-America Game and has already committed to Florida State.
Other Top Recruits
DB Ahmad Thomas, Class of 2013
Thomas had a productive junior season with 79 tackles and an interception. The 6-0, 195-pound prospect gave his verbal commitment to Oklahoma in May.
LB Marqez Hodge, Class of 2013
The 6-1, 210-pound tackling machine was one of the team's most productive defensive players in 2011. Hodge committed to Syracuse in June over offers from Minnesota, Purdue and Western Kentucky.
DB Da'Wan Hunte, Class of 2013
Hunte will line on the opposite side of Thomas and is always up for the challenge. As a junior, Hunte had more than 70 tackles to go with three fumble recoveries, two interceptions and a touchdown. He committed to NC State in May.
LB Devante Duclos, Class of 2013
Duclos will man the middle of the defense for Central after spending his junior year as the top reserve. The 6-0, 215-pound senior committed to Western Kentucky last week over offers from Marshall and Syracuse.
QB Brandon Diaz, Class of 2013
The first-year starter transferred from Miami Christopher Columbus in the spring and hopes to lead the Rockets back on top of the state. At 6-3 and 200 pounds, Diaz has the size and tools to keep an eye on.
PK Emilio Nadelman, Class of 2013
The owner of the strongest leg in Miami-Dade County, Nadelman doesn't put too many kickoffs in play and the coaches are confident he can nail any kick inside of 55 yards.
RB Dalvin Cooke, Class of 2014
Cooke's blazing speed is the perfect complement to Yearby's vision and toughness, and he gives Central a two-headed monster in the backfield. Cooke eclipsed the 1,000-yard mark as a sophomore and committed to Clemson during the summer.
OL Trevor Darling, Class of 2014
Even though he's just a junior, Darling has established himself as the leader of Central's offensive line after a superb sophomore campaign. The 6-4, 315-pound tackle is a crushing run blocker and will probably be responsible for blocking Nkemdiche. Darling is committed to Miami.
WR Devontae Phillips, Class of 2015
Just a sophomore, the 6-0, 190-pound Phillips is already one of the top sophomore prospects in the state and would love nothing more than to put his name on the national map with a big game against the nation's top-ranked team.
-- Kipp Adams and Corey Long
No. 3 Bradenton (Fla.) Manatee vs. Miramar (Fla.)
Sunday at 2 p.m. ET on ESPN2 and WatchESPN.com
|Manatee QB Cord Sandberg leads his team on ESPN2 on Sunday.|
QB Cord Sandberg, Class of 2013
Sandberg is heading into his third-year as a starter for the Hurricanes and has a record of 26-3. He threw for nearly 2,200 yards and 19 touchdowns last season, leading Manatee to the Class 7A state championship. Rated No. 232 in the ESPN 300, the 6-2, 214-pound senior is also a running threat, gaining 813 yards and scoring 10 touchdowns on the ground. Sandberg ended his recruitment in June when he committed to Mississippi State.
Other Top Recruits
DL Derrick Calloway, Class of 2013
The 6-1, 300-pound Calloway is the leader of a defensive line with four FBS prospects on it. He had 16 tackles for loss and eight sacks as a junior, saving his best performance for the 7A state championship against First Coast (Jacksonville, Fla.) with three sacks. USC, Texas Tech, Arkansas and South Florida are all in his final group.
DL Blake Keller, Class of 2013
The 6-2, 225-pound Keller is a terror on the outside, finishing his junior year with 75 tackles and 14 sacks. He committed to UCF in June.
DL Marquis Dawsey, Class of 2013
Slightly undersized (5-11, 230), Dawsey projects as a linebacker at the next level but has established himself as a guy that can find the quarterback. Dawsey matched Keller's 14 sacks as a junior. Western Kentucky and Florida International are among the interested parties.
ATH Anthony Lauro, Class of 2013
The 5-9, 200-pound Lauro started his junior year as a slot receiver and finished as a tailback. He did both well, finishing with more than 1,500 yards from scrimmage to go with 14 touchdowns. Lauro holds offers from Akron, Western Kentucky and Air Force.
ATH JaJuan Pollock, Class of 2013
Pollock (5-7, 165) will be Manatee's slot receiver and assist in the return game, where his 4.41 speed is expected to catch the eyes of a few scouts. Florida Atlantic and Florida International are the programs currently showing interest.
DB Willie Smith, Class of 2013
Smith is a two-year starter who has developed into an intriguing safety product thanks to his size (6-1, 180) and long arms. Western Michigan offered Smith over the summer.
DL Demarcus Christmas, Class of 2014
One of the elite 2014 prospects in the state, the 6-3, 285-pound Christmas has the athleticism to play defensive end or along the interior. As a sophomore, Christmas had 41 tackles and forced two fumbles.
OL Jake Stickler, Class of 2014
The 6-6, 300-pound Stickler is an impressive-looking offensive line prospect who will be heading into his first full season as a starter. Head coach Joe Kinnan is high on Stickler's potential.
QB Josh Meyer, Class of 2015
It's unlikely we'll see the 6-2, 195-pound backup this weekend, but he is next in line to take over for Sandberg and had an impressive showing in Manatee's spring game.
LB Jermaine Grace, Class of 2013
Grace (6-1, 205) is still growing into his long limbs and has both the speed and quickness to stop a ball carrier from getting past him. What makes Grace a unique prospect is his length, which gives him extra protection from offensive linemen looking to put a body on him. It appears like Miami and Tennessee are his favorites right now, but Grace's recruitment could last until National Signing Day. He's rated No. 155 in the ESPN 300.
Other Top Recruits
WR/ATH Sean Avant, Class of 2013
Talented, quick wide receiver expected to do several things for Miramar's offense in 2013. The 6-0, 180-pound senior is looking at several programs, including West Virginia, Florida International, Marshall, Syracuse and Bowling Green.
RB Alex Lee, Class of 2013
The senior leader of a talented backfield that will give Miramar good balance on offense. The 5-10, 175-pound senior has been offered by Florida Atlantic and South Alabama.
QB Nick Jeanty, Class of 2014
The 6-1, 170-pound Jeanty transferred to Miramar from Southwest Ranches (Fla.) Archbishop McCarthy in the spring after throwing for more than 1,500 yards with 13 touchdowns as a sophomore.
WR Tanares "Taz" Robinson, Class of 2014
Another junior prospect who Miramar head coach Damon Cogdell is high on after he contributed 22 catches and three touchdowns as a sophomore.
RB Cameron Rigby, Class of 2014
The 5-9, 175-pound Rigby transferred to Miramar from Hollywood (Fla.) Chaminade-Madonna in the spring and rushed for more than 90 yards last week on just three carries in the Patriots' kickoff classic victory over Hollywood (Fla.) McArthur.
RB Alex Anderson, Class of 2015
Miramar coaches believe Anderson could be as good as any sophomore in the state. He will get several opportunities on Sunday splitting time with Lee and Rigby.
-- Corey Long
Spanish Fort (Ala.) vs. Daphne (Ala.)
Monday at 4 p.m. ET on ESPN & WatchESPN.com
SPANISH FORT (0-0)
WR Deon Johnson, Class of 2013
Johnson, an ESPN 300 wide receiver, should be the biggest playmaker on the field on Monday. The Alabama commitment can fly. He has an explosive first step, and once he gets by you, there's no catching him. He's also a major threat in the return game. In last week's preseason win over Muscle Shoals (Ala.), Johnson had seven catches for 47 yards and returned three kickoffs for 136 yards.
Other Top Recruits
DB Jonathan Cook, Class of 2013
Cook had close to 10 offers before he committed to Nebraska in early August. The 6-1, 183-pound cornerback has the size to succeed at the next level, and he's a competitor. Cook tallied 11 tackles versus Muscle Shoals last week.
RB Ed Autry, Class of 2013
The 5-10, 170 pound running back adds a different dimension to the Toros' backfield. He committed to UAB in July.
QB T.J. Fleeton, Class of 2013
Fleeton started at quarterback all of last year, and with running back T.J. Yeldon now at Alabama, he expects to take on a bigger role. At 6-2 and 220 pounds, he's a strong, thick kid with a big arm and can make every throw. He likes to stay in the pocket but has deceptive speed. He committed to Louisiana-Lafayette in June.
Other Top Recruits
LB Jalan Coleman, Class of 2013
The 6-2, 215-pound linebacker expects to rush off the edge similar to what Alabama freshman Ryan Anderson did a year ago for Daphne. Coleman has offers from Louisiana-Lafayette and UAB, and he's receiving interest from South Florida, Southern Miss and Troy.
DB Trey Jenkins, Class of 2013
Jenkins is a bigger, more physical defensive back. Daphne plans to use him primarily at safety, but he also may move up and play outside linebacker at times. He committed to UAB in July.
WR Chris Sain, Class of 2013
At 6-1, Sain is a vertical guy who can jump extremely well. He's more of a downfield threat for Daphne.
WR Jonathan McGaster, Class of 2013
McGaster, the brother of Vanderbilt freshman Torren McGaster, is one of the fastest prospects on the team. He's dangerous every time he gets the ball in his hands.
-- Greg Ostendorf