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Tag:Oklahoma
Posted on: January 9, 2012 3:20 pm
 

2012 All-star game top performers


Posted by Bryan Fischer

The three major all-star games are over and the recruits are all on their way back home as they settle into a big three week stretch before Signing Day rolls around. As the last high school competitions of the 2011 season, the games also gave us a chance to see how players do against future FBS talent. Based on the performances during the Semper Fi game, Under Armour All-American game and the U.S. Army All-American Bowl, here's a few standouts at each position.

QUARTERBACK

Jeff Lindquist, committed to Washington
Semper Fi game

The Huskies commits shined during all-star game week and Lindquist started things off by being the best QB in the Semper Fi game, tossing two touchdowns and keeping some plays alive with his feet when needed. He's got great pocket awareness and a strong arm, perfect fits in his future college system.

Cyler Miles, committed to Washington
Army All-American Bowl: 7-of-8, 155 yards, two total touchdowns

The co-MVP of the game, Miles was a savvy signal-caller who got the start for the West and was on point most of the game. He took some sacks but generally got the ball out quickly and was accurate in hitting his receivers. He throws a great deep ball and hit Dorial Green-Beckham for the play of the game on the longest touchdown pass in bowl history in the 2nd quarter.

Jameis Winston, committed to Florida State
Under Armour All-American game: 8-of-9, 178 yards and two touchdowns

The MVP, Winston is best described as a gamer. He wasn't perfect but used his legs to escape a collapsing pocket several times and nearly turned in some Michael Vick-esque plays. He was accurate in the passing game and delivered a beautiful deep ball to hit his target in stride for a 75-yard touchdown. If he sticks to football, the sky's the limit based on how good he is despite being raw.

RUNNING BACK

Mike Davis, undecided
Army All-American Bowl: six carries for 16 yards, two catches for 31 yards

Davis showed a great blend of speed and power and had the burst to get out of the hole and into daylight. He had a nice move that he bounced to the sideline for a 26 yard gain and was one of the few East offensive players who could get things going.

Randy 'Duke' Johnson, committed to Miami
Under Armour All-American game: nine carries for 50 yards, three catches for 18 yards, 161 all-purpose yards

It's pretty clear who the best back in the state of Florida is after Johnson put his moves on display for a national audience. His ability to weave in and out of tackles is remarkable and he's got the vision and moves to take advantage of even the smallest amount of space. His 83-yard kick return had him cutting across the field at least three times before being pushed out just short of the end zone. Johnson is clearly a threat to score every time he has the ball in his hands.

T.J. Yeldon, committed to Alabama
Army All-American Bowl: five carries for 16 yards, three catches for 39 yards

The Tide get another great back in Yeldon, who seemed to kick it in an extra gear whenever a defender came near him. He's got great athleticism and showed it off with a leaping try for the endzone that came up just short. He is an every down back with the way he can come out of the back field to catch passes or run between the tackles.

WIDE RECEIVER

Marvin Bracy, committed to Florida State
Under Armour All-American game: two catches for 56 yards and a touchdown

Need speed? Bracy has plenty of it and flaunted it by getting behind several defensive backs as a deep threat. His touchdown came on a 32 yard catch that was easily one of the highlights of the week as he twisted around to grab the ball and held on for the score.

Amari Cooper, committed to Alabama
Under Armour All-American game: two catches for 95 yards and a touchdown

Cooper produced a play to start off the game for the White with a 75-yarder from Winston that set the tone in the Under Armour game. He ended up snagging the ball in stride over a defender and was off to the races after that. His blend of good hands and speed make him one of the top players in the country and underrated by anybody who doesn't think he can make a big impact in Tuscaloosa.

D.J. Foster, undecided
Semper Fi game

Foster was a multipurpose tool during the game and played at receiver, running back and took some snaps as a wildcat quarterback. He's a solid guy who can take the ball downhill while using his speed and quickness in the open field.

Dorial Green-Beckham, undecided
Army All-American Bowl: two catches, 88 yards and a touchdown

Green-Beckham had a pair of drops but the one-handed, record-setting grab he had in the first half was enough to overcome them. The first thing that stands out is his size, dwarfing anybody but one or two offensive linemen, and speed (definite two-stepper) that are some of the reasons why he's the top player in the class of 2012. He's still raw but his physical tools are unmatched by any wide out.

Jaydon Mickens, undecided
Semper Fi game

Mickens caught a touchdown and was named the MVP after doing just about everything he could in the West's victory. He nearly had a touchdown pass but the ball went off the receiver's hands but had several nice catch-and-runs to make up for it. He's shifty in traffic and if he's in open space, good luck catching him.

DEFENSIVE LINE

Jonathan Bullard, committed to Florida
Army All-American Bowl: one sack, three tackles

Bullard surprised with his strength and size from the end spot and gave the tackles trouble all game long. He was able to apply a constant stream of pressure and played the run well - a rarity in some of these games. He committed to Florida during the game and should be someone who plays early given how ready he looks for college.

Jordan Jenkins, uncommitted
Under Armour All-American game: eight tackles, two for loss, two sacks

Jenkins was playing out of position at tackle but made an impact with his quickness to get by offensive linemen with ease. He moved outside for a play or two but the ability to handle the interior line like he did was just another sign of a great player.

Noah Spence, committed to Ohio State
Under Armour All-American game: seven tackles, four for a loss, three sacks

There's a reason he's the number one defensive end in the nation as he was quick off the snap, had the power and agility to pass rush and could play the run well. Spence filled the stat sheet and was in the backfield just about every play. With his size at the moment combined with polished pass rush moves, it won't be too long before every Big Ten quarterback knows his name and number.

Adolphus Washington, committed to Ohio State
Army All-American Bowl: two tackles, two sacks

Another great performance out of Washington is one reason why the Buckeyes' defensive line class looks absolutely frightening in 2012. He displayed a terrific first step and chased players down from the backside like a man on a mission. Though the West offensive line was pretty solid, Washington was a thorn in their side all game long.

Channing Ward, committed to Ole Miss
Under Armour All-American game: seven tackles, three for a loss, two sacks

Ward was unblockable and terrorized opposing quarterbacks all night long so much that the coaches need to take him out to give the other team a chance. He led the White team defense in every category and had even more pressure than what showed up in the box score. He looked an awful lot like DeMarcus Ware against some talented offensive linemen down in Tampa.

LINEBACKER

Joe Bolden, committed to Michigan
Under Armour All-American game: seven tackles, one for a loss

Bolden wasn't the most impressive linebacker at the even but he was extremely solid and among the most sound defensive players at the game. He racked up seven tackles and fit the gap well after recognizing run plays.

Reggie Ragland, committed to Alabama
Under Armour All-American game: seven tackles, half for a loss

The first thing that stands out is Ragland's size and ability to be just an absolute load coming downhill. He'll fit in well as an inside linebacker playing the run as I didn't see too much of him in coverage.

DEFENSIVE BACK

Landon Collins, committed to Alabama
Under Armour All-American game: four tackles, interception

Collins is one of the top players in the country and proved it against all-star competition. He can hit - delivering a touchdown-saving, loud hit at the goal line - and cover. He's instinctive and beyond all else hits another level once the bright lights come on.

De'Vante Harris, undecided
Under Armour All-American game: seven tackles

Harris made waves after the game by decommitting from Oklahoma but that shouldn't overshadow his performance on the field. He was able to play wide receivers well and came up to tackle well when needed in run support. What really impressed were his instincts, knowing just when to come off his man and when to sink back.

Tracy Howard, undecided
Army All-American Bowl: one tackle

Howard is as close as it gets to being a shutdown corner for this class and opposing quarterbacks rarely looked his way during the game. What stands out about him is how fluid he is in coverage and the ability to play his man while reading the quarterback. He's savvy and understands the game better than most.

Marcus Maye, committed to Florida
Under Armour All-American game: seven tackles, fumble recovery

Normally a safety, Maye slid up and played linebacker in the game and impressed with how well he did in traffic. He was flying all around and used his speed to track down some speedy players. He was, naturally, solid in coverage and showed plenty of range that will serve him well at safety. He did a great job of turning his hips and changing directions quickly too.

Kendall Sanders, committed to Texas
Army All-American Bowl: two tackles, two interceptions

Sanders picked off two passes during the game and was roaming around like a ball-hawk that he could be. His position isn't set in college but based on the Army Bowl, cornerback or nickelback is a good start when he arrives in Austin. He turns his hips well and did a good job of sinking off his man into the throwing lane.

Tee Shepard, committed to Notre Dame
Semper Fi game

Shepard locked down his opposing receiver and was rarely tested by opposing quarterbacks all night. He's so lengthy that he can play the press coverage well or back off and roam a little to play ball-hawking corner. He turns his hips so well that he can change directions quicker than a receiver can sometimes.

Shaq Thompson, committed to Cal
Army All-American Bowl: five tackles, two for loss

Thompson was all over the field on Saturday and backed up his number five overall ranking with his play against some of the best in the country. His size stands out but he can run and was a hard hitter that you didn't want to go over the middle in front of. He led the West in tackles and was the enforcer in the secondary.

Posted on: January 8, 2012 11:30 am
 

1/8 Recruiting Roundup

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Bill O'Brien's hiring isn't deterring Penn State recruits. The focus of the Nittany Lions' recruiting will be in the Mid-Atlantic.

Cal had a big day at the Army All-American Bowl.

 Defensive back De'Vante Harris decommitted from Oklahoma.

 Frank Wilson saw a big recruit get away from LSU but that's ok.

Junior college offensive lineman Will Latu reopened his recruitment and is planning a visit to Florida State.

 Ohio State is back in the picture for Monty Madaris.

Posted on: January 1, 2012 10:56 am
 

1/1 Recruiting Roundup

Posted by Bryan Fischer

The first recruiting roundup of 2012! Hope everybody has a great and happy new year.

Tee Shepard is a Notre Dame commit who will still pick between the Irish and USC.

 The Orange Bowl is a big positive for West Virginia recruiting.

 Defensive end Mario Edwards Jr. is no longer considering Oklahoma.

 To say Wisconsin recruits their home state is an understatement.

Getting to the Cotton Bowl won't change how Bill Snyder recruits at Kansas State.

 A look back at Stanford's 2008 recruiting class, one of the best in school history.

 A Georgia commit attended Florida's bowl practice.
Posted on: December 30, 2011 3:06 pm
 

Rochell taking his time during recruitment

Posted by Bryan Fischer

ATLANTA -- Walk around the Rising Seniors Bowl this week and McDonough (Ga.) defensive end Isaac Rochell stands out for his joyful personality off the field as much as his size and pass rushing skills do at practice. One of the most heavily recruited players at the event this week, he doesn't feel the pressure of living up to expectations and really just wants to enjoy the event.

"It's been fun and I've really liked it," Rochell said. "I didn't really expect it to be like this but I really like the experience.

"I'm not saying my high school team isn't good but this gives you a different standard to compare yourself to.

The 6-foot-5, 245-pounder already holds scholarship offers from schools such as Alabama, Clemson, Georgia and Virginia Tech but despite all the attention schools have shown him after a terrific junior year, Rochell is just sitting back and listening and isn't too concerned with narrowing down his choices right now.

"The last offer I got was Oklahoma about a month ago," he said. "I don't necessarily have a top five but I do have schools I think about more so than others. There are also schools I say I probably won't go to. But I don't have a distinct top five where I will pick from yet."

Still, with every offer that does get extended, Rochell is weighing each school against some of the factors he is looking for.

"Location is a big deal," he said. "Obviously my role in the program and the campus feel and atmosphere, things like that too."

Rochell is planning to attend several junior days over the next couple of months but likely will avoid the camp circuit in the spring and summer outside of one or two stops. He does want to do his research before making a decision, which he already has a time frame picked out to make it in.

"I'm going to try to make it before the season," he said. "It's not something I want to rush because you rush it and you'll regret your decision. I'm just going to take my time."

Though there's no leader at the moment, Rochell has already visited Alabama unofficially for the LSU game - he said the Tigers will win the rematch because of, no surprise, their defensive line - and has developed a close relationship with assistant coach Marion Hobby at Clemson.

But, for now, the Maxpreps 2013 Watch List defensive end is just taking his time with recruiting and focusing on the task at hand in the Rising Seniors Bowl.

Posted on: December 30, 2011 9:37 am
 

12/30 Recruiting Roundup

Posted by Bryan Fischer

2013 recruits Rueben Foster and Tray Matthews are recruiting each other and Foster is flirting with Georgia as a result.

 A Q&A with UCLA linebacker commit Kenny Orjioke.

 Top lineman Arik Armstead will announce shortly and it will likely be to finalist Cal.

 Recapping some of Nebraska's recruits.

 Oklahoma commit Sterling Shepard is proud to carry on his father's legacy.

 Colorado head coach Jon Embree talked a little recruiting.

 A Gator Bowl win could help Florida stave off Ohio State in recruiting.
Posted on: December 29, 2011 1:32 am
Edited on: December 29, 2011 1:37 am
 

Second-ranked TE McNamara picks Oklahoma

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Over the past few years Oklahoma has developed quite a pipeline from Southern California to Norman, expanding their recruiting base beyond just the state of Texas and the surrounding areas. You can add another player ticketed to play for the Sooners from the region after Wednesday night, as San Diego (Calif.) tight end Taylor McNamara committed to the program.

"Its official, boomer I'm a sooner!," McNamara tweeted.

The 6-foot-5, 240-pounder is a former Arizona commitment but, following the firing Mike Stoops, opened his recruitment back up. McNamara also considered Colorado but, in the end, ended up flipping from one brother to another with a pledge to Oklahoma head coach Bob Stoops.

"Colorado is obviously not in a place where they're going to be winning as many games as Oklahoma," McNamara told Rivals. "I'm all about winning. I love winning and I really realized it this year."

McNamara is ranked as the nation's second best tight end in the class of 2012 and sits just outside the Maxpreps top 100. He stared over the summer at various camps and combines before putting together a solid senior season that earned him an invite to play in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl in January.

"He shows soft hands, natural receiving skills, does a great job of adjusting to the ball in the air, can make a difficult catch look easy, shows good concentration, can extend his arms and catch the ball away from his body, and rarely drops anything within reach," analyst Tom Lemming said.

The pledge by McNamara gives Oklahoma 19 commitments for the class of 2012 and is the third tight end part of the group headed to Norman next season.




Posted on: December 28, 2011 11:59 am
 

12/28 Recruiting Roundup

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Steve Kragthorpe helped snare quarterback Gunner Kiel for LSU.

 With Kiel off the board, what does Notre Dame do?

 Wide out Jehu Chesson is looking forward to going to Michigan.

- Good breakdown of the standouts from the first day at the Rising Seniors Bowl.

Arizona State's new coaches are making some progress in recruiting.

 A season recap for Maryland commit Isaac Goins.

 Oklahoma has recently entered the picture for running back David Smith.
Posted on: December 27, 2011 6:28 pm
Edited on: December 27, 2011 7:06 pm
 

Top quarterback Gunner Kiel commits to LSU

Posted by Bryan Fischer

After decommitting from Indiana and delaying his decision several times, Columbus (Ind.) quarterback Gunner Kiel has finally pulled the trigger and committed to LSU.

"I can't wait to play in the SEC," Kiel told 247Sports. "A lot of people call it the NFL of college football and it will be an exciting time. It would mean a lot to be a starting quarterback in such a great conference at a great school. I really love the players and the coaching staff. They were all great to me on my visit and seemed very welcoming."

Ranked as the top signal-caller in the class of 2012 and number two overall recruit by Maxpreps, Kiel holds scholarship offers from just about every program in the country, including Alabama, Oklahoma, Michigan, USC and others. He surprised plenty of folks by committing to Indiana in late July and new head coach Kevin Wilson but opened things back up in October. He quickly scheduled official visits to each of his finalists, Notre Dame, LSU and Vanderbilt.

"To be honest I'm just reevaluating my decision," Kiel told CBSSports.com at the time. "I just want to go out and see other places and see if IU is the right place."

The 6-foot-4, 215-pounder threw for 2,517 yards and 28 touchdowns this season while also rushing for 11 scores. He led Columbus East to an 11-2 record his senior year and was named Indiana's "Mr. Football" by the Indianapolis Star.

Kiel's brother, Dusty, is a sophomore at Indiana and his uncle, Blair, played at Notre Dame.

The strong-armed and aptly named Gunner will enroll early in Baton Rouge after playing in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl on January 7th.

The commitment of the top quarterback in the country is another big boost for the Tigers class of 2012, which now sits at 22 commits. LSU took three quarterbacks with last year's class and Kiel figures to battle talented junior college transfer Zach Mettenberger for the starting job upon arriving on campus. Prior to Kiel's pledge, Les Miles' next recruiting class was ranked 9th overall in the MaxPreps team rankings.



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