NEW YORK -- It has been five years since the Nike Football SPARQ Combine tour stopped in New York for a visit. On one of the biggest weekends in football with the NFL draft taking place in the Big Apple, many young athletes with dreams of one day walking across the big stage at Radio City Music hall will be looking to test and compete with their peers at the Nike combine.
At Saturday's combine at Randall's Island Park at least three elite prospects can be expected to attend, with ESPN 150 running back Derrick Green of Hermitage (Richmond, Va.) leading the list of expected attendees. Just last year at the Baltimore combine, the power back stole the show with a 111.55 SPARQ rating. Since then, colleges have been knocking at the door with offers. Power programs such as Ohio State, Oklahoma and Virginia Tech have been in hot pursuit.
Another player to look out for is Penn State commit Ross Douglas of Avon (Ohio). Douglas has been attending the combines the past three years and has shown improvement each year. As just a freshman, Douglas turned heads with an 87.00 rating after running a 4.58 40. Last year at the Ohio combine the-do-it-all athlete's rating increased to a 94.23. As a junior, Douglas rushed for over 1,000 yards with 15 touchdowns, but will play defensive back for the Nittany Lions.
Earlier this year in Philadelphia, a relatively unknown prospect had an outstanding day and has since received over 20 offers. Defensive lineman Ebenezer Ogundeko of Thomas Jefferson (Brooklyn, N.Y.) entered Philly with offers from Syracuse and Connecticut. This second team All-Brooklyn talent has the size and strength that colleges covet for a rush end. The 6-foot-2 ½, 227-pound prospect posted a 42-foot powerball and 28.5-inch vertical jump on the way to a 87.39 SPARQ rating.
Others to watch include tailback Augustus Edwards of Tottenville (Staten Island, N.Y.), who has offers from Rutgers, Connecticut and Vanderbilt, and David Coggins of Sacred Heart (Waterbury, Conn.), who holds an offer from Boston College.
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