The first three events on the Nike Football Training Camp circuit were in two of the hottest states for football talent in the country: Florida and California. It is only fitting that the third weekend adds two more of the nation's most talent-rich states to the tour beginning with the always talented Lone Star State.
On Saturday, TCU will be the site where a number of the state's top players are slated to put on a show as well as some superstars from states such as Oklahoma, Kansas and Louisiana.
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Some elite quarterbacks will be pulling double duty after attending the kickoff event for the Elite 11 regional quarterback camps hosted by TCU on Friday. Among those quarterbacks that will likely be at TCU both Friday afternoon and Saturday for the Nike Camp are Shavodrick Beaver, Casey Pachall, Christian Mathews and Jacob Karam.
Incidently, all four of these standouts excel both on the run and with their arms but should have an opportunity to display their skills at both throughout the weekend. Beaver is already a Rivals.com four-star while Pachal, Mathews and Karam all should be considered in the same range.
There will be an elite group of receivers to throw to on Saturday as well, led by Greg Timmons out of Aldine Eisenhower High School. Timmons, who is already committed to the University of Texas, will be joined by Dallas (Texas) St. Mark's wideout Terdema Ussery. The big strong pass-catcher recently picked up his fifth offer from Colorado.
Another receiver scheduled to attend in a similar mold to Ussery that is getting loads of interest is Emory Blake out of Austin, Texas. Blake already has offers from the likes of Oregon, Texas Tech and Vanderbilt.
2008 NIKE CAMP SCHEDULE
Miami, Fla. – Camp Recap
Gainesville, Fla. – Camp Recap
Los Angeles, Calif. – Camp Recap
Fort Worth, Texas – April 26
Baton Rouge, La. – April 27
Chapel Hill, N.C. – May 2
Tuscaloosa, Ala. – May 3
Columbus, Ohio – May 9
State College, Pa. – May 10
Stanford, Calif. – May 17
Eugene, Ore. – June 7
Provo, Utah - June 14
Look for some other wideouts to make a name for themselves in the camp setting such as Brady Brown from Argyle, Texas, Aaron Fisher out of Keller Fossil Ridge or Jarrod Darden a 6-foot-5 target that moonlights on the basketball court.
At defensive back, there won't be a bigger name in attendance than Gabe Lynn out of Jenks, Okla. Lynn will be looking to show why he is being recruited by schools from around the country and will be looking to get his fifth star with a strong performance.
A couple of other defensive standouts should be tough matchups for anyone on the offensive line. Those disrupters are defensive tackle Calvin Howell and defensive end Alex Okafor, both four-star prospects. Howell out of San Antonio Warren, has an offer sheet that includes nearly every team in the Big 12.
Okafor has an offer sheet that looks eerily similar, but it hasn't mattered for him since the 6-foot-4, 215-pounder committed to Texas back in March.
Two positions with loads of talent in Fort Worth will be at running back and linebacker and that should set up some great matchups in the one-on-ones.
The running backs are led by Miami five-star commit Bryce Brown from Wichita, Kansas. Brown is highly regarded and arguably the nation's top running back prospect in the class of 2009. He will be competing against a player that will be in the conversation as the top running back prospect in the class of 2010, Lache Seastrunk of Temple, Texas.
Among the other running backs that make up this elite group are Oklahoma State commit Jeremy Smith and a pair of Mansfield gamebreakers.
Out of Mansfield high school is four-star Stepfan Taylor who has numerous offers from around the country. Out of Mansfield Timberview, Eric Stephens has two early offers with several more likely to come in.
The opposing linebackers include Texas commit Patrick Nkwopara, Rockwall Heath linebacker Austin Moss and Jonathan Stewart, a linebacker out of Louisiana picking up offers by the day.
Two players who could end up playing any number of positions at the TCU camp are Rex Burkhead out of Plano, Texas and Jesse Grandy out of Pine Bluff (Ark.) Dollarway Senior. Burkhead will likely end up at running back, though he could play any number of positions at the next level while Grandy may project best as a cornerback but could line up at wide receiver or even quarterback.
For more on the NIKE Football Training Camps, check out StudentSportsFootball.com.