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Tag:Mike Davis
Posted on: April 16, 2011 5:36 am
Edited on: April 16, 2011 2:51 pm
 

Nkemdiche stars at Georgia Nike Camp

Posted by Bryan Fischer

ATHENS, Ga. -- Hundreds of players from all over the Southeast braved an oncoming thunderstorm to showcase their skills at the University of Georgia in the latest edition of the Nike Football Training Camp and Elite 11 Quarterback Competition Friday night.

Once again, Georgia had a strong display of BCS-caliber talent at the camp and the state continues to show why recruiters from across the country are anxious to get a look at the next wave of talent coming out of the Peach State. The class of 2012 is loaded with talent along the defensive line and several of the state's 33 recruits with FBS offers made their way down to the camp.

While many of the highly regarded juniors flashed their skills during drills, it was not hard to see that Grayson (Ga.) sophomore defensive end Robert Nkemdiche was not only the most talented of the group, but easily the top player at the camp.

"They called me out and I did it," Nkemdiche said matter of factly. "It felt good."

His home state might end up sending close to 50 players to an FBS school from the defensive line come February but you'd be hard pressed to find someone who looks as good as Nkemdiche does at first glance. The 6-foot-4, 265 pound end was a physical specimen, showing up fit and ready to dominate older competition.

On top of a quick initial burst, he displayed several polished pass rush moves that even much older college players don't have. Making the most of a lightning quick spin move or just relying on a straight speed rush, Nkemdiche was impossible to stop in one-on-ones all night long. Thought he will continue to grow and mature at the position, the gifted pass rusher is already thinking ahead at what he wants to work on the rest of the summer.

"I want to work on my speed," Nkemdiche said. "I real fast right now, like a 4.5 (40 yard dash) but I want to drop my time. I want to be the best I can be and the coaches want that too."

Nkemdiche's high school coaches also want to win, which is why he'll also try his hand at running back next season for Grayson. As terrifying as it might be to some opposing players to see someone of his size and skill running at them, Nkemdiche is equally excited at getting the chance to run over (and past) a few defenders to reach the end zone on offense.

"I can't wait," he said. "It's going to be great."

In spite of having almost two years before inking his signature on a letter of intent, the talented sophomore is already sitting on multiple scholarship offers. Given his unique blend of size, speed and pass rushing ability, it's easy to see why some schools feel the need to extend an offer early in hopes of making Nkemdiche's recruitment a quick one.

"Auburn was the last offer I got, maybe late January or early February," he said. "I don't know how many but I have over ten.

"Alabama, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida and that's all I know off the top of my head right now."

Several programs' annual Spring Game is Saturday and Nkemdiche was planning on going to Alabama's "A-Day" but will instead catch most of the day's action at home. He'll continue to exploit offensive linemen on Sunday however, when he'll head to the Atlanta Under Armour Camp.

Utilizing his unique skill set is something Nkemdiche will continue to do throughout the summer and has already planned out a few unofficial visits and camp stops between now and the end of July.

"In the summer I'm going to go to a couple schools," he said. "LSU, Alabama and Auburn's camps. Just (visit) as many schools as I can."

Nkemdiche was one of only two sophomore to walk off the field as a position MVP but based on his performance Friday night, he might as well have been holding the title of top recruit in the Southeast for 2013.

And you'd find few who would be willing to argue if he snagged it either.

Alexander, Eligwe share the spotlight

Just as impressive as the defensive line group, the linebackers in attendance received their share of publicity and right fully so. With eight players holding multiple BCS offers, there might not have been a better position group all year. In fact, many of the camp instructors had a hard time thinking of a better group of linebackers in the decade long history of the Nike Camps.

Fittingly, the position MVP award was one of the toughest decisions of the night so the coaches ended up making Oxford (Ala.) stud Kwon Alexander and Stone Mountain (Ga.) linebacker Ukeme Eligwe co-MVPs.

"I feel like I did great and showcased my talent," Eligwe said. "There was a lot of great players out here today."

"I really just wanted to do my best and learn from everybody," said Alexander.

Eligwe made the case to be the top linebacker in the state - if he wasn't already - thanks to his size and very good quickness. He opened his hips well and hardly let anything get past him during drills. A top performer in all of the one-one drills, the 6-foot-2, 220 pounder also wouldn't mind an extra rep or two against Alexander to settle who really was the top linebacker at the event.

"That would be nice," Eligwe said with a smile. "He's a good player also so I don't feel different, it's all good. I came out here to have fun and do what I have to do."

The speedy Alexander was quite confident who would eventually prevail and would have loved to see another play to decide top dog.

"Yeah I want another," he said with a grin. "I want to be the best out there."

Both players have seen the amount of offers rolling in slow to a trickle due mostly to the fact that they have a scholarship awaiting from pretty much every major school in the country. Alexander is known for his speed out on the field and is mainly focusing on track this offseason and keeping recruiting in the outside lane for the time being. Despite being 6-foot-2 and 210 pounds, Alexander runs an 11.2 second 100 meters and also stars in the 200 meters. All of the time spent on the track working to shave off a few seconds means the bulk of his recruitment will come during the summer and into the fall.

"There's no one standing out right now," he said. "Everybody's still the same. After track season I'm going to do a few unofficial (visits) and then once the season starts I'll do my official visits.

"I'll take all five official visits. I'm going to take one to Oregon, USC, UCLA. I'll take a couple of them down (in Alabama)."

Eligwe isn't as involved with track as Alexander and as a result is able to narrow down his list of suitors somewhat.

"My most recent offer was last week but I can't really remember," he said, adding that they've all blended together a bit. "Florida State's standing out. More than likely I'll be at their Spring Game."

Florida and Georgia are also standing out according Eligwe, who received an early morning phone call Friday from South Carolina's staff on the first day of the May Evaluation Period. With so many schools vying for his attention Eligwe is starting to look a bit closer to home as to where he might attend college.

"More than likely yes but I wouldn't just say I'm going to stay in the area," he said. "Those are just some of my top schools right now"

Alexander also received an early morning phone call Friday and the SEC staff who made it ended up making an impression on the talented linebacker.

"Arkansas called me about six," he said. "It was good because they were the first team that called me. I didn't know that today was there time to call me so that surprised me when they called. They just asked what's up and everything."

The Hogs are not the only school who is in hot pursuit of Alexander, though. Several schools from both the Pac-12 and the SEC are heavily recruiting him.

"Oregon, Auburn, Alabama, USC, LSU," Alexander said. "I don't mind where I go, it's just where it makes me feel a part of a family."

No stranger to campus, Elder looks solid at the camp

There are few players who actually are defensive backs. You have safeties, you have corners and a few times you even find a nickel corner among the bunch. College Park (Ga.) defensive back Chaz Elder however, lives up to the label.

The 6-foot-2, 290 pound Elder played a bit of both Friday during drills and one-on-ones and displayed the speed and agility to excel as either a big corner or a prototypical safety. Even he didn't get caught up in what position he ran out on to the field for, it was all about the reps.

"I actually have no idea, I just play," Elder responded when asked which position he's better at.

It's hard to disagree, especially if you're a college coach. Holding a double-digit offer list, Elder has his pick of the litter and has schools recruiting him at both safety and corner.

"Some colleges say I'll be a good-sized corner,” he said. “Others say I'd be good at safety. It doesn't matter to me. Again, I just want to play."

Elder recently picked up another offer, the latest being from Southern Miss. Even though the offers keep rolling in, the Georgia native is starting to narrow down his list and sees three schools separating from the pack.

"It's between Illinois, Clemson and Georgia," Elder said. "It's mostly Clemson and UGA because I've visited them the most. I came up (to Georgia) for one of the spring practices. At Clemson, it's mainly the coaches and the people (I like)."

Despite his top two being pretty close to home, Elder added that he would have no reservations about heading off aways for school if he found the right fit.

Notes

- Position MVPs were McDonough (Ga.) defensive back D.J. White, Florida-bound running back Mike Davis of Stone Mountain (Ga.), Alexander and Eligwe at linebacker, Lithonia (Ga.) offensive lineman Joe Harris and Nkemdiche on the defensive line.

- Gainesville (Ga.) wide receiver C.J. Curry was looking forward to going up against Tallahassee (Fla.) defensive back Travis Blanks and the two did not disappoint, waging several good battles during one-on-ones.

"I'm not going to make any excuses, he got me," Curry said. "He had a good day and worked hard to get the W today."

A Georgia commit, Curry also didn't mind bringing up the Bulldogs to a few of more well known recruits at the camp.

"It's always fun," Curry said. "I was trying to talk to Blanks (about Georgia). Other than going against him, I didn't really see him though."

With Georgia's class of 2011 nicknaming themselves the “Dream Team,” Curry said he was working on a nickname for the class of 2012.

- It was not a particularly strong group of quarterbacks for either the Nike Camp or the Elite 11 and the howling winds and light rain didn't help things either. Orlando (Fla.) quarterback Nick Patti showed off his arm again and continues to impress on the camp circuit. If it were not for his height (5-foot-10) he'd be getting offers from a lot of BCS programs. Cleveland (Tenn.) signal caller Chad Voytik also impressed with his accuracy and was probably the top guy at the event but did not participate in the Nike Camp portion. The finals of the Elite 11 were cut off due to inclement weather.

- Buford (Ga.) offensive tackle Vadal Alexander, who has offers from just about everybody, was one of several recruits to get a 6 A.M. phone call from the USC coaching staff. Alexander said he spoke to Ed Orgeron and James Cregg for several minutes and was surprised by the call. At this point, he has already been to LSU, Alabama and Auburn but says all schools are in the race to land his services.

- If you were looking for Louisville commit Larry Jefferson, you wouldn't find him catching passes Friday night. Although he is being recruited at tight end, Jefferson made the trip to Athens to learn a few new tricks for his other position.

"I'm a tight end but I went to defensive end because I play D-end in high school too," he said. "I just wanted to learn more stuff about the position."

When asked why he wants to play on offense in college, Jefferson was quite honest with his answer.

"I love getting the ball," he said with a nice laugh. "I like scoring touchdowns and everything. I'm committed and done, stress is off my shoulders."

- A few others who impressed were linebacker Dillon Lee out of Buford (Ga.), Powder Springs (Ga.) offensive tackle Kofi Amichia, Dublin (Ga.) 2013 linebacker Johnny O'Neal, Stepheson (Ga.) linebacker Raphael Kirby, Norcross (Ga.) receiver Jason Croom, 2013 defensive end Reginald Carter out of Stephenson (Ga.), Hillgrove (Ga.) athlete Kenyan Drake, 2013 Autauga (Ala.) tight end O'Terrius Howard and Charlotte (N.C.) linebacker Nick Dawson among others.

Posted on: April 2, 2011 5:58 pm
Edited on: April 2, 2011 6:30 pm
 

March SEC Early Commitment List

Posted by Bryan Fischer

It's the second day in April but it's also the final week in March and several schools have already hit the ground running in the class of 2012. Today we'll take a look at the verbal commitments in the SEC, where Nick Saban leads the pack in terms of verbal commitments early in the recruiting cycle.

Alabama (10)

Defensive tackle Dakota Ball (Lindale, Ga.)
Athlete Kenyan Drake (Powder Springs, Ga.)
Offensive lineman Brandon Greene (Ellenwood, Ga.)
Kicker Adam Griffith (Calhoun, Ga.)
Defensive end Caleb Gulledge (Prattville, Ala.)
Linebacker Reggie Ragland (Madison, Ala.), MaxPreps Top 100 for 2012 Watch List member
Running back Justin Taylor (Atlanta, Ga.)
Athlete Justin Thomas (Prattville, Ala.)
Athlete Eddie Williams (Panama City, Fla.), MaxPreps Top 100 for 2012 Watch List member

Arkansas (3)

Defensive tackle Calvin Barnett (Navarro JUCO)
Wide receiver Jalen Cobb (Warren, Ark.)
Offensive lineman Jeremy Ward (Pottsville, Ark.)

Auburn (3)

Offensive lineman Michael Flint (Oxford, Ala.), MaxPreps Top 100 for 2012 Watch List member
Defensive end Cassanova McKinzy (Birmingham, Ala.)
Wide receiver Alex Taylor (Lester, Ala.)

Florida (8)

Running back Mike Davis (Stone Mountain, Ga.)
Offensive lineman Jessamen Dunker (Boynton Beach, Fla.)
Running back Matt Jones (Seffner, Fla.)
Defensive tackle JaFar Mann (Stone Mountain, Ga.), MaxPreps Top 100 for 2012 Watch List member
Defensive tackle Dante Phillips (Venice, Fla.)
Wide receiver LaTroy Pittman (Citra, Fla.), MaxPreps Top 100 for 2012 Watch List member
Linebacker Jeremi Powell (Largo, Fla.)
Defensive tackle Quinteze Williams (Tyrone, Ga.)

Georgia (5)

Wide receiver C.J. Curry (Gainesville, Ga.)
Defensive end Jalen Fields (Milledgeville, Ga.)
Kicker Marshall Morgan (Miami, Fla.)
Wide receiver Lonnie Outlaw (Milledgeville, Ga.)
Tight end Ty Smith (Moultrie, Ga.)

Kentucky (3)

Defensive tackle Thomas Chapman (Louisville, Ky.)
Defensive back Josh Harris (Maysville, Ky.), MaxPreps Top 100 for 2012 Watch List member
Quarterback Patrick Towles (Fort Thomas, Ky.)

LSU (6)

Defensive end Torshiro Davis (Shreveport, La.)
Defensive end Ronnie Feist (Edgard, La.)
Tight end Dillon Gordon (River Ridge, La.)
Linebacker Trey Granier (Thibodaux, La.), MaxPreps Top 100 for 2012 Watch List member
Wide receiver Avery Johnson (Pompano Beach, Fla.), MaxPreps Top 100 for 2012 Watch List member
Tight end John Thomas (Bossier City, La.)

Ole Miss (0)

Mississippi State (2)

Offensive lineman Devon Desper (Madison, Miss.)
Athlete Deontay Evans (McComb, Miss.)

South Carolina (1)

Running back Kendric Salley (Williston, S.C.)

Tennessee (1)

Running back Imani Cross (Gainesville, Ga.), MaxPreps Top 100 for 2012 Watch List member

Vanderbilt (0)

Posted on: March 25, 2011 4:35 pm
 

Florida adds big defensive tackle Jafar Mann

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Florida head coach Will Muschamp picked up a bit of momentum on the recruiting trail heading into the weekend. Stephenson (Ga.) defensive tackle Jafar Mann became the seventh commitment for the Gators Friday afternoon, verbally committing on his father's birthday.

“He was really happy about that,” Mann told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution about honoring his father.

The 6-foot-3, 270 pound defensive tackle joins running back and high school teammate Mike Davis as a Gator commitment. Muschamp is also pursuing Stephenson defensive end Jarontay Jones and linebacker Raphael Kirby so Mann might not be the last from his school to verbally commit to Florida.

“I’d say it’s a strong possibility,” Mann said of the group playing together in college.

The timing of the announcement came as a big of a surprise to some that follow recruiting but for Mann, Florida was a program that was out front for sometime.

“It feels really nice,” he told the paper. “I think I had my mind made up for a while. I just needed to sit back a while and think about it and make sure it was the right decision. I definitely think it’s the best place for me.”

Mann is on the MaxPreps Top 100 for 2012 Watch List and held almost 20 scholarship offers from the likes of Alabama, Auburn, Georgia, Miami and Tennessee. He is the second defensive line commitment for Florida, joining tackle Dante Phillips.

Photo courtesy of Jason Getz, Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Posted on: February 22, 2011 12:50 pm
Edited on: February 22, 2011 12:52 pm
 

Texas grabs star wide receiver for commit #7

Posted by Bryan Fischer

One of the top receivers in the state of Texas decided to end the recruiting process early and was able to do so by flashing the "Hook'em Horns" sign. Skyline (Texas) wide receiver Thomas Johnson was the latest commit to join Texas' 2012 recruiting class, informing Mack Brown and the coaching staff late Monday night according to several recruiting websites.


"It just felt right for me. Overall, it's a great school," Johnson told Orangebloods.com. "It's the school I wanted to go to. If you know where you want to go, why not go ahead and do it now?" 

Johnson picked up a scholarship offer from the Longhorns at the recent Junior Day in Austin and pulled the trigger about a week later. He held upwards of 20 verbal offers from programs such as Auburn, Miami, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, TCU and USC

"It's a big monkey off my back," he added. "I'm just glad to be committed to a place I really want to go to. Now I don't really have to worry about having to do anything with any other colleges. I'm just relieved and excited." 

The 6-foot, 185 pound receiver was hampered by injuries his junior year but had over 2,000 multi-purpose yards and 25 touchdowns as a sophomore. Johnson is the second Skyline receiver to sign with Texas after freshman starter Mike Davis did last year. 

Johnson is the only wide out committed to the Longhorns for the class of 2012 and should team up with current quarterback commit Connor Brewer in a few years.
Posted on: February 19, 2011 9:27 pm
Edited on: February 19, 2011 9:33 pm
 

Florida adds two more for '12

Posted by Bryan Fischer

One is nice, two is twice as nice. That's precisely what head coach Will Muschamp is thinking after grabbing commitments from a pair of players during Florida's Junior Day Saturday.

Stone Mountain (Ga.) running back Mike Davis and Largo-Pinellas Park (Fla.) linebacker Jeremi Powell both committed to Florida, Davis doing so on his 18th birthday. The pair give the Gators five commitments for the class of 2012.

“I just felt at home here,” Davis told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “I talked to all the coaches and they told me everything I needed to know about the school and their system. So I wanted to go ahead and make my mind up and get on with it.”

Davis is the second running back to head to Florida, almost a week after the commitment of Seffner-Armwood (Fla.) back Matt Jones. The 5-foot-11, 185 pound Davis complements the much bigger Jones in the backfield as more of a speed back. He is also the younger brother of Washington Redskins running back James Davis.

The 6-foot-2, 200 pound Powell recorded 15 sacks his junior year and had interest from Iowa State, Purdue, South Carolina and USF among others.

“It's the best vibe from a visit I've ever had,” Powell told Swamp247.com. “The coaches were off the charts. It was better than I could have thought.”

The commitment of Davis likely means Florida is done recruiting at the running back position. Florida is expected to add at least two more linebackers this class.

Posted on: February 17, 2011 9:56 am
 

2/17 Recruiting Roundup

Posted by Bryan Fischer

CBSSports.com has learned that Albert Pujols has rejected the Cardinals contract offer and will instead sign with Alabama. Great bit of recruiting by Nick Saban.

- Recent Texas commit Hassan Ridgeway said he felt real comfortable at the school and his coach thinks the Longhorns are getting a great defensive end. We’re not the only one to notice that Mr. February (Mack Brown) has slowed down this month compared to previous years.

- Armwood (Fla.) running back Matt Jones says he’s a “Gator for life,” a few days after committing to Florida.

- One player to keep an eye out for is Georgia tailback Mike Davis, who is drawing a lot of attention.

- A class of 2011 commit to USC still hasn’t signed and the reason looks to be academics.

- West Virginia has sent out an offer to Ohio lineman Caleb Stacey.

 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com