football Edit

From the Road: Performance evaluation

Rivals.com recruiting analysts were out in force this past weekend, taking in 20 games or scrimmages involving teams from 10 states.
Here are some rundowns on the top prospects they saw in person, listed alphabetically.*
EVALUATIONS: Offensive Prospects | Defensive Prospects
OT THOMAS ASHCRAFT (6-5/295), Cedar Hill (Texas) High School
PERFORMANCE: Helped open up massive holes for the Cedar Hill backs in a 38-14 win over Cincinnati La Salle.
STRENGTHS: You can't ignore Ashcraft's size: he is massive, with long arms and is big from the waist down. Despite that size, he moves well and has good athleticism and great flexibility for a big man.
WEAKNESSES: Too often Saturday, Ashcraft was caught wandering around looking for someone to block. He also didn't show that nasty streak or finisher's mentality that you want to see out of a lineman.
QB TEDDY BRIDGEWATER (6-3/170), Miami Northwestern
STRENGTHS: He showed flashes of what he could become in the future: another elite prospect from Northwestern. Good size and athleticism and has the makings of a good arm.
WEAKNESSES: Bridgewater needs to learn the game and position. He has a ways to go.
RB KENNY CAIN (6-1/200), River Ridge (La.) John Curtis
CONSIDERING: Holds offers from Tulane and Arkansas, among others
PERFORMANCE: Had 14 carries for 66 yards in 28-12 loss to Euless (Texas) Trinity.
STRENGTHS: Runs with good strength and good body lean. He has good feet and a strong frame. Has the ability to play fullback as well as tailback.
WEAKNESSES: Doesn't have great speed or explosiveness. May project better at either fullback or linebacker than running back.
QB TERRANCE CAIN (6-1, 191), Blinn College (Texas)
CONSIDERING: Houston, Minnesota, Tulane, SMU, Tulsa
PERFORMANCE: Cain was 22-of-35 for 256 yards and one touchdown pass against Butler Co. (Kan.) CC. He also led a game-winning drive that had three third-down conversions.
STRENGTHS: Cain has great pocket poise and solid arm strength. Also has ability to run when the pocket breaks down. A true leader with for one of the top JC teams in the nation.
WEAKNESSES: Some schools might shy away from him because he's 6-1. Does have to protect the football a little better.
OT JAMES CARPENTER (6-5/305), Coffeyville (Kan.) CC
COMMITTED TO: Iowa State, but will also visit Ole Miss, Oklahoma State and others.
PERFORMANCE: Helped Coffeyville open a 10 point-lead against Navarro CC before it evaporated late in the game.
STRENGTHS: Looked solid moving from a run-first offense to a spread-type attack. His massive frame makes him really hard to get around.
WEAKNESSES: Might be better as a right tackle than a left tackle.
TE ORSON CHARLES (6-2/215), Tampa Plant
CONSIDERING: Miami, Florida, Florida State, Georgia and others
PERFORMANCE: Five receptions for 101 yards and three touchdowns, one sack.
STRENGTHS: Charles has exceptional hands, is terrific in the air and shows good athleticism as a wide receiver in Plant's pass-happy offense.
WEAKNESSES: What position does he play in college? Is he a tight end, wide receiver, outside linebacker or defensive end? He's too small to play tight end, at in the traditional sense.
G SHALON COLEMAN (6-7/260), Olive Branch (Miss.) High
STRENGTHS: Coleman has an unbelievable frame, long arms and good athleticism. He has great feet and moves well.
WEAKNESSES: Coleman really struggles staying on blocks but did well pulling. He lacks consistency and needs work on fundaments and techniques.
G JARVE DEAN (6-2, 320), Coffeyville (Kan.) CC
CONSIDERING: It's not clear what schools are recruiting Dean.
PERFORMANCE: Helped Coffeyville open up a 10-point lead against Navarro before it evaporated late in the game.
STRENGTHS: A massive interior linemen, when Dean got after it in running situations, he opened up some really big holes.
WEAKNESSES: Will need to get into better shape, but that should continue to happen as the season rolls on.
WR TYRECE GAINES (6-2/205), Butler Co. (Kan.) CC
CONSIDERING: Oklahoma has offered and other SEC and Big 12 schools also are interested.
PERFORMANCE: Gaines had two receptions for 37 yards and one touchdown against Blinn College (Texas).
STRENGTHS: Butler's go-to-guy didn't get on track against Blinn, but did show flashes of brilliance with good hands, good routes and the ability to get into the end zone.
WEAKNESSES: Not a true burner, Gaines is definitely fast enough to be an every-down receiver.
RB DAQUAN HARGRETT (5-9/180), Miami Northwestern
COMMITTED TO: West Virginia
STRENGTHS: Hargrett is a nice back with good speed. He runs hard and has a good lean and balance. Hargrett also shows quick feet.
WEAKNESSES: Hargrett could improve his size and strength, and should do that once he gets to the next level. He needs to learn to run with more patience.
K BRAD HICKS (6-0/175) Blinn College (Texas)
CONSIDERING: To be determined.
PERFORMANCE: Blinn's kickoff man put Butler Co. (Kan.) CC in the hole on almost every kickoff by blasting them consistently through the end zone.
STRENGTHS: Kickers who can put it in the end zone on every attempt are kickers who get recruited. He also was able to nail a field goal, too.
WEAKNESSES: None noticed on kickoffs.
OT GAVIN HOWARD (6-5/270), Owasso (Okla.) High
PERFORMANCE: Behind his blocks, which included several pancake efforts, Jacques Washington had 16 carries for 103 yards and T.J. Connor had the clinching 28-yard TD run with 2:22 left in a scrimmage against Springdale (Ark.) Har-Ben.
STRENGTHS: Howard showed good footwork on passing plays, and when Owasso ran the ball, it was almost always behind him on the right side. Was even more physically put together than last fall.
WEAKNESSES: Sometimes took plays off when it was not to his side or didn't carry through cut blocks after initial burst.
RB TREY JOHNSON (5-10/166), Richmond (Va.) Varina
PERFORMANCE: Johnson had seven carries for 163 yards and three TDs – all in the first half – in Varina's 35-6 win over Danville (Va.) George Washington.
STRENGTHS: Johnson has excellent quickness and a good burst. He isn't huge but can run inside and breaks tackles when he gets a head of steam going. He showed his flat-out speed on a 93-yard touchdown run.
WEAKNESSES: Johnson isn't a big back, so he'll have to be a slasher in college.
RB TYRESSE JONES (5-9/185), Miami Northwestern
CONSIDERING: West Virginia, Buffalo, Troy, USF and others
STRENGTHS: Jones mainly played fullback against Long Beach (Calif.) Poly but was good when given the ball. He's compact, tough and fast.
WEAKNESSES: He lacks size and doesn't get many touches.
WR JUSTIN JORDAN (5-11/190), Blinn College (Texas)
CONSIDERING: UAB, Arizona, California, Kansas State, Kentucky, Southern Miss, Utah and others.
PERFORMANCE: Five receptions for 35 yards, two rushing touchdowns and two lost fumbles against Butler CO. (Kan.) CC.
STRENGTHS: Speed, versatility and leadership skills. He can be a real special teams threat with his open-field ability.
WEAKNESSES: Ball security is something that has to be worked on.
RB CORVIN LAMB (5-9/180), Miami Northwestern
STRENGTHS: One of the fastest players in the state of Florida in his class. He had three long kick returns, showing his outstanding speed and open-field running.
WEAKNESSES: Lamb just can't get many touches in Northwestern's offense.
RB KENDIAL LAWRENCE (5-9/180), Rockwall (Texas) Heath
CONSIDERING: Arizona, Buffalo, Georgia Tech, Houston and Kansas, among others.
PERFORMANCE: Made the most of his abbreviated night with a number of impressive runs, continuing to prove he is one of the more underappreciated prospects in Texas.
STRENGTHS: Compact and strong, Lawrence can make defenders miss in tight spaces. He has the ability to catch the ball out of the backfield and shows good change of direction. He runs with a low center of gravity and can absorb hits and maintain his balance.
WEAKNESSES: Lacks that acceleration out of his cuts that could make him an elite back.
WR DE'JOSHUA JOHNSON (5-11/170), Pahokee (Fla.) High
STRENGTHS: Johnson could be the next big Pahokee star at this position. He has blazing speed and is a big-time deep threat. Johnson made some nice grabs and showed good awareness.
WEAKNESSES: Johnson just needs to keep growing and keep working on the fundamentals of the position.
G DALLAS LEE (6-4/295), Buford (Ga.) High
PERFORMANCE: Had four tackles, a half-sack and 1.5 tackles for loss while playing both ways in a 42-21 win over Mansfield (Texas) Timberview.
STRENGTHS: Lee is a tough, blue-collar player who is physical and plays on both sides of the ball. He is extremely strong at the point of attack and is effective at asserting and establishing the line of scrimmage.
WEAKNESSES: Doesn't wow you with his quickness and he has a tendency to play high, but it is hard to be too critical of a player who played as many meaningful snaps as Lee did in the trenches on both sides of the ball.
OT STAVION LOWE (6-5/294), Brownwood (Texas) High
PERFORMANCE: Played through an ankle injury while dominating Burnet (Texas) High with his size and mobility in 35-24 win.
STRENGTHS: Already has the size to compete for playing time as a freshman. For a big kid, he is quick in pass protection. He is a real mauler as a run blocker.
WEAKNESSES: Needs to keep his feet while run blocking. He will need to watch his weight since he is probably already is at his maximum size for his frame.
RB ANTHONY MILLER (6-0/220), Dallas Carter
COMMITTED TO: Holds offers from the likes of Colorado State, Michigan State and Oklahoma State.
PERFORMANCE: Rushed for three touchdowns while playing both ways in a 21-6 win.
STRENGTHS: Simply a football player. He made plays on both sides of the ball. He is physical and showed the type of leadership and toughness coaches love.
WEAKNESSES: Doesn't have great top-end speed. He is a little squatty physically and may project better on defense or as a fullback than a running back.
G ANTHONY MORGAN (6-4/325), Corsicana (Texas) Navarro Junior College
COMMITTED TO: Oklahoma State.
PERFORMANCE: Helped spark a 10-point comeback against Coffeyville (Kan. ) CC by opening huge holes for the Navarro backs to run through.
STRENGTHS: Like he did in high school, Morgan simply took over from his guard spot by pulling and opening up huge holes. He also showed impressive footwork on passing situations. Great build, too.
WEAKNESSES: Did get a little gassed at the end of the second quarter, but that was about it.
QB AARON MURRAY (6-1/198), Tampa Plant
PERFORMANCE: Was 19-of-25 for 296 yards and five touchdown passes, and rushed for 108 yards in 42-7 win over Tampa Wharton.
STRENGTHS: Murray is an accurate passer who throws a beautiful ball; he has complete command of offense, good escapability and can throw on the move.
WEAKNESSES: Murray is a tad on the short size and never is under center.
QB CASEY PACHALL (6-4/189), Brownwood (Texas) High
PERFORMANCE: Was named game MVP after throwing four TD passes and one interception in a 35-24 victory over Burnet (Texas) High.
STRENGTHS: Possesses good height and a live arm. He also has above-average mobility and above-average accuracy while throwing on the run.
WEAKNESSES: Needs to add some muscle mass in order to take the contact that will happen at the next level. He knows he has a live arm and that leads him to try to thread some passes in heavy coverage.
T AUBREY PHILLIPS (6-6/330), Olive Branch (Miss.) High
STRENGTHS: Phillips has a great frame, is strong and moves his feet well. He's more adept in the run game. Once he gets locked up on a defender, it's over.
WEAKNESSES: Phillips struggled with the speed off the edge from Pahokee, especially in pass protection. He needs to work on technique. But he could play on the interior in Knoxville.
RB MELVIN RICHARDSON (5-10/210), Long Beach (Calif.) Poly
CONSIDERING: Oregon, Fresno State, San Diego State and Stanford
STRENGTHS: Richardson had a brilliant performance. Richardson dominated Miami Northwestern's defense, running right through the Bulls for four quarters. He's powerful and keeps his legs churning.
WEAKNESSES: Richardson has it all but blazing speed.
WR NU'KEESE RICHARDSON (5-9/151), Pahokee (Fla.) High
STRENGTHS: Richardson can flat out fly, has unbelievable quickness and shows uncanny explosiveness. He has another gear that only a few have.
WEAKNESSES: Richardson is small and needs to add weight and muscle. He's playing quarterback this season, so he'll need a lot of work running routes and playing receiver.
T DAMIEN ROBINSON (6-7/330), Olive Branch (Miss.) High
CONSIDERING: Alabama, Ole Miss, Mississippi State, Southern Miss.
STRENGTHS: Robinson sets up well in pass protection, and has great size and good athleticism for a big man. He looks like your prototype offensive tackle.
WEAKNESSES: Robinson struggled staying on run blocks against quicker and more athletic defensive lineman. He needs work on technique and to get stronger up top.
RB DONTRAYEVOUS ROBINSON (6-1/215), Euless (Texas) Trinity
PERFORMANCE: Rushed for two touchdowns in his team's 28-12 win over River Ridge (La.) John Curtis.
STRENGTHS: Has prototypical size for a college back. He's a true between-the-tackles back who has good vision and patience.
WEAKNESSES: Didn't show much burst against John Curtis. He's an every-down back but may lack that home-run ability.
WR BOBBY SMITH (6-6/200), Richmond (Va.) Varina
CONSIDERING: East Carolina has offered, and Virginia Tech, Virginia, Maryland, Syracuse and others are recruiting.
PERFORMANCE: Smith had two touchdown catches, one of them a 71-yarder, against Danville (Va.) George Washington.
STRENGTHS: Smith is big. At 6 feet 6 and more than 200 pounds, he can't be single-covered in high school. He has strong hands, fights for the ball and showed deceptive speed on his long touchdown catch. He's also a good blocker.
WEAKNESSES: Smith is not a burner and wouldn't have been so wide open on his long touchdown had it not been for Varina's strong rushing attack and a nice play-action fake. He needs to be quicker on his cuts.
RB VINCENT SMITH (5-6/160), Pahokee (Fla.) High
STRENGTHS: Smith is a speedy back with good quickness and deceptive power. He's a patient runner with good vision and balance. Smith will surprise you with his toughness.
WEAKNESSES: Smith lacks the necessary size to be an every-down back at the next level.
RB ERIC STEPHENS (5-8/180), Mansfield (Texas)
PERFORMANCE: Had 122 all-purpose yards and one rushing touchdown in a 42-21 loss to Buford (Ga.) High
STRENGTHS: Is never tackled by only one defender and always falls forward. Stephens showed a diverse skill set – he can catch, can find the edge or get yardage between the tackles.
WEAKNESSES: His height is less than ideal, but Stephens is hardly a scatback. He did have some ballhandling issues, fumbling twice, but recovering both of them – one in the end zone.
QB PRESS TAYLOR (6-2,195) Butler Co. (Kan.) CC
CONSIDERING: SMU, TCU, Tulsa and others.
PERFORMANCE: Taylor was 19-of-34 for 281 yards and three downs against Blinn College (Texas).
STRENGTHS: A true field general, Taylor has full command of the Butler offense and operates it well, especially the play-action passes. Has a lot of moxie and great leadership skills that should make him successful on the next level.
WEAKNESSES: Doesn't possess the strongest arm, but he makes up for that with his football intelligence.
WR EDGARD THELIAR (6-3/190) Butler Co. (Kan.) CC
CONSIDERING: Miami, Oregon, USF, Texas Tech, Hawaii, Kansas, Kansas State and others.
PERFORMANCE: Theliar had six receptions for 156 yards and two scores against Blinn College (Texas). He also had the highlight of the game when he scored on a 92-yard bomb on a play-action pass.
STRENGTHS: Runs effective routes and showed great hands on some tough catches in traffic. Also showed home-run ability on the long TD grab.
WEAKNESSES: Will need to add bulk to stand up against more physical defensive backs on the next level.
OT ZHAMAL THOMAS (6-4/315), Corsicana (Texas) Navarro Junior College
CONSIDERING: Open after transferring from LSU.
PERFORMANCE: Helped spark a 10-point comeback against Coffeyville (Kan. ) CC by opening huge holes for the Navarro backs to run through.
STRENGTHS: Anchored the left side of the line and did a nice job in both running and passing situations; he showed good footwork and nice drive blocking.
WEAKNESSES: Not the quickest feet, but Thomas still has all the tools to be a solid Division I-A offensive lineman.
OT MARQUIS WALLACE (6-3/310), Richmond (Va.) Varina
PERFORMANCE: Wallace played offensive line in Varina's 35-6 win over Danville (Va.) George Washington, so he had no stats.
STRENGTHS: Wallace is huge and simply pounds on opponents in the running game. He also has quick feet for such a large offensive lineman and gets out of his stance well in pass protection.
WEAKNESSES: Wallace needs to get himself in a little better shape, as he's carrying extra pounds at this stage. He plays left tackle for Varina but projects as a guard at the next level because he's much better in tight quarters than in space.
RB ERIC WATSON (5-10/210), Olive Branch (Miss.) High
STRENGTHS: Watson is a powerful downhill runner who showed the ability to break tackles and move a pile. He gets yards after first contact because he keeps his legs churning.
WEAKNESSES: Watson doesn't have great speed and could grow into a fullback at the next level.
OT ROY WATTS (6-6, 300) Corsicana (Texas) Navarro Junior College
PERFORMANCE: Helped spark a 10-point comeback against Coffeyville (Kan. ) Community College by opening huge holes for the Navarro backs to run through.
STRENGTHS: Watts was a highly regarded linemen in high school when he signed with Texas. When he wanted to take the game over, he could do it with his great strength, massive frame and solid footwork.
WEAKNESSES: Did get beat once or twice around the edge on a speed rush, but the rest of the game was sturdy.
RB DAVID WILSON (5-11/192), Danville (Va.) George Washington
COMMITTED TO: Virginia Tech
PERFORMANCE: Wilson was held to less than 50 yards on single-digit carries in GW's 35-6 loss to Richmond (Va.) Varina, although the game was stopped with four minutes left in the third quarter because of a blown transformer. He scored his team's only touchdown.
STRENGTHS: Wilson has good size and thick, strong legs. He runs hard between the tackles and is like a bull after contact as he continues to keep his legs churning and carries tacklers for extra yardage. He has the speed to break a big run at anytime. On defense and special teams, he is a big hitter.
WEAKNESSES: Wilson's supporting cast on offense was his biggest problem. If he has one weakness, it's that he's not a wiggle guy in space. He is not a shake-and-bake runner.
FS DARREN BATES (6-1/195), Olive Branch (Miss.) High
CONSIDERING: To be determined
STRENGTHS: Bates was tough in run support because he flies to the football, takes good angles and is not afraid of contact. He also showed nice athleticism.
WEAKNESSES: Bates could use some work in coverage, and needs to get bigger and stronger.
DE BRAYDEN BURNETT (6-3/240), Southlake (Texas) Carroll
PERFORMANCE: Anchored a defense that held Plano West to only nine points in a 35-9 rout.
STRENGTHS: Burnett showed terrific instincts and awareness in defending Plano West's spread attack. He has a high motor, and is a smart, instinctual player. He is active with his hands and is athletic enough.
WEAKNESSES: Physically, he is not overly impressive and he doesn't seem to be 6-3. While he doesn't necessarily pass the "look test," you can't argue with his production Saturday.
CB JARVIS BYRD (5-10, 173) Pahokee (Fla.) High
CONSIDERING: Arkansas State, Ball State, Buffalo, Southern Miss, Troy, Western Michigan and others
STRENGTHS: One of the most underrated players in Florida. state. Byrd has great ball skills. He's tough, quick and a dynamite special-teams players.
WEAKNESSES: 5-10? Maybe. He's small.
S RYAN CLARK (6-1/195), Corsicana (Texas) Navarro Junior College
PERFORMANCE: Official statistics weren't available, but Clark did a nice job from his safety spot in both run support and in defending the pass.
STRENGTHS: The quarterback of the Navarro defense, there was no question that his teammates looked up to him for guidance and inspiration in key situations.
WEAKNESSES: Might be more like 6-0 than 6-1 and didn't flash to the ball as much as you would like from a true All-America safety, but there still were plenty of positives for the future Red Raider.
LB TELVION CLARK (6-1/210), Norfolk (Va.) Granby
COMMITTED TO: Virginia Tech
PERFORMANCE: Clark had 12 tackles, one for a loss, on defense, and added 36 rushing yards on seven carries on offense in a 35-3 loss to Hampton (Va.) Bethel.
STRENGTHS: Clark has good closing speed and terrific tackling ability. He showed explosiveness and good aggression, and is a clear leader on the field.
WEAKNESSES: Clark's aggressive nature got him in trouble at times as he over-pursued on a couple of plays and got himself out of position. One such play resulted in an easy touchdown. He needs to play more under control.
CB RUDELL CRIM (6-0/190), Butler Co. (Kan.) CC
CONSIDERING: Crim has offers from Iowa State, Louisville, Ole Miss and others.
PERFORMANCE: He had six tackles and a key interception against Blinn College (Texas).
STRENGTHS: Great size, great closing speed and the size that allows him to lock up against taller receivers; all that makes Crim one of the top defenders in the Kansas Jayhawk Conference.
WEAKNESSES: Was beat once for a score on a jump ball when the defender used his frame to outphysical him at the ball's highest point.
DE JAMES GAYLE (6-4/220) Hampton (Va.) Bethel
COMMITTED TO: Virginia Tech
PERFORMANCE: Official defensive stats weren't available but Gayle had about five tackles, with one for a loss, in Bethel's 35-3 win over Norfolk (Va.) Granby.
STRENGTHS: Gayle has a huge frame and good speed. He showed nice pursuit in chasing from behind and at times controlled the edge against the running game. He has an excellent motor.
WEAKNESSES: Gayle showed just flashes of pass-rushing skills and over-pursued at times. He didn't always wrap up as a tackler, and occasionally was pushed off the line of scrimmage.
LB CORDARIUS GOLSTON (6-1/205), Lancaster (Texas) High
CONSIDERING: Holds offers from Arizona and Nebraska along with some mid-major programs.
PERFORMANCE: Shouldered the load for the Lancaster defense against the run-heavy offensive attack of Dallas Carter, piling up numerous tackles.
STRENGTHS: Golston has long legs and a sturdy frame. He is a physical inside linebacker who attacks blockers with strength and aggression. He has a great motor and thrives in a physical environment.
WEAKNESSES: Against Carter's rushing attack, he wasn't able to answer any questions about his ability to drop into passing lanes and cover tight ends or running backs.
LB NORMAN GRIFFITH (6-1, 220) Pahokee (Fla.) High
CONSIDERING: Ball State, Buffalo and Iowa State, among others
STRENGTHS: Good-looking linebacker prospects who always seems to be around the ball making plays. Griffith showed good instincts and can run and hit. He also looks comfortable in coverage.
WEAKNESSES: Griffith sometimes plays with too much aggression and needs to be more patient.
LB BRANDIN HAWTHORNE (6-1/181), Pahokee (Fla.) High
STRENGTHS: Speedy outside linebacker has good speed to the ball. He can rush the passer, using his quickness and athleticism.
WEAKNESSES: Hawthorne is undersized and needs development in the weight room. Can get lost sometimes at the point of attack.
DT CHRIS HENDERSON (6-1/250), Dallas Carter
PERFORMANCE: Dominated the line of scrimmage against Lancaster, never allowing the Tigers to get on track offensively in a 21-6 win.
STRENGTHS: Henderson has great quickness off the snap. He has a strong thick lower body, but he has the ankles of a linebacker, a good indicator of athleticism. Was a disruptive penetrator on Friday.
WEAKNESSES: Has a tendency to play high at times and sometimes doesn't use his leverage as well as he should.
CB WILLIE HICKMAN (5-9/160), Pahokee (Fla.) High
CONSIDERING: Florida Atlantic, Kansas State and Minnesota, among others
STRENGTHS: Hickman is a quality corner with good speed, ball skills and instincts. He is tough against the run.
WEAKNESSES: Like numerous other Pahokee standouts, Hickman lacks size. He gets by on his athleticism.
DE DARBY JACKSON (6-3/235), Corsicana (Texas) Navarro Junior College
CONSIDERING: To be determined.
PERFORMANCE: Official statistics weren't available, but Jackson was all over the field against Coffeyville (Kan.) CC and helped the defense pitch a shutout in the second half.
STRENGTHS: Long arms and a quick first step made him a real threat in pass-rush situations, but he also was impressive in run support.
WEAKNESSES: Will need to add some bulk and strength to put up with the pounding of bigger linemen on the next level, but the building blocks are there.
S KERRY LEWIS (5-9/180), Lancaster (Texas) High
CONSIDERING: Has plans to visit Kansas State and Vanderbilt, who join Kansas, Arizona, TCU, and Oklahoma State among his favorites.
PERFORMANCE: Was active in run support from his safety position, compiling a load of tackles on the night against Dallas Carter's rushing offense.
STRENGTHS: Lewis was the best tackler on the field. Sure open-field tackler, and diagnoses plays well. Knows when to go for the big hit and when to just get the player down. Has a cornerback's coverage ability.
WEAKNESSES: He is undersized even as a corner, but he may project best as a safety, a la Bob Sanders.
CB KHALID MARSHALL (5-9/165), Miami Northwestern
STRENGTHS: He doesn't shy away from contact and showed toughness against the run.
WEAKNESSES: Marshall made two big plays defending the pass, but that was about it because Poly didn't go to the air much.
DE JONATHAN MASSAQUOI (6-4/250), Butler County (Kan.) CC
PERFORMANCE: He had seven tackles, two tackles for a loss and two sacks against Blinn College (Texas).
STRENGTHS: All over the field in both run and passing situations, Massaquoi should give offensive coordinators fits the rest of the season. Already has a major-college frame and looks to be a heck of a get for Troy.
WEAKNESSES: Slowed a little bit late in the game as he ran out of gas, but that was about it.
S TEVIN McCASKILL (6-2/183), Miami Northwestern
CONSIDERING: Auburn, Clemson, Miami, NC State, USF, Virginia Tech
STRENGTHS: McCaskill is a good-looking athlete. He has good size and speed.
WEAKNESSES: At times, he played aggressively against the run; at other times, he didn't and instead let things come to him.
LB AUSTIN MOSS (6-2/215), Rockwall (Texas) Heath
PERFORMANCE: Only played in the first couple of defensive series in a scrimmage setting.
STRENGTHS: Has the instincts of a coach's son. Does a great job of locating the ball. He is a true inside linebacker who is great in a phone booth and comes downhill with a lot of force. Also showed in limited time that he can make tackles in space. Has an already-strong physique.
WEAKNESSES: Needs to continue to loosen his hips and show that he can be effective in deeper zone drops, an area in which he already has shown improvement.
LB JARRED PRICE (5-11/218), Blinn College (Texas)
CONSIDERING: Originally committed to California, but now is open and considering Cal, Kansas State, Kentucky, Arizona and Ohio U.
PERFORMANCE: Price had four unassisted tackles, two sacks, two forced fumbles and an assisted tackle against Butler Co. (Kan.) CC.
STRENGTHS: An unstoppable blitzer from the outside, Price was easily able to get by much bigger blockers with his speed and amazing technique. Always around the football and also solid in run support.
WEAKNESSES: His lack of height will present challenges when dealing with bigger and elite offensive linemen. And will he be able to handle the pounding when those bigger and athletic linemen come at him down after down in the running game?
DT DeANTRE RHODES (6-4/279), Richmond (Va.) Varina
CONSIDERING: Boston College, Clemson, Maryland, Michigan, Virginia, Virginia Tech and others.
PERFORMANCE: Rhodes had roughly four tackles, with one for a loss, in Varina's 35-6 win over Danville (Va.) George Washington.
STRENGTHS: Rhodes has excellent size. He is strong, plays with good pad level and takes on double-teams well. He has a good motor and is a solid pass rusher.
WEAKNESSES: Rhodes needs to be a bit more explosive off the ball and use his hands better.
CB LARON SCOTT (5-9/185), Butler Co. (Kan.) CC
CONSIDERING: To be determined.
PERFORMANCE: He had five tackles, one tackle for a loss, an interception and two pass breakups against Blinn College (Texas).
STRENGTHS: Easily one of the fastest players on the field, Scott also displayed some great natural instincts and the ability to close on the football. Also was effective on special teams.
WEAKNESSES: Size might make it tougher to defend taller receivers, but he does make it up for in a number of different ways.
CB/RB JUSTIN SKILLENS (5-8/175), Tulsa (Okla.) Booker T. Washington
PERFORMANCE: Offensive statistics weren't announced in the scrimmages against Tulsa McClain and Tulsa East Central, but he electrified the crowd with a 62-yard touchdown run against McClain.
STRENGTHS: Speed. Skillens was the fastest kid on the field in a series of scrimmages that were littered with at least 20 Division I prospects. Every time he got the ball, he did something that made people go "oh, my" in the stands.
WEAKNESSES: At his size, he will have to use that speed if he stays on offense in college because it'll be tough to handle the pounding from a big-time defense.
DE TRAVIS STEPHENS (6-3/253), Blinn College (Texas)
CONSIDERING: Has offers from UAB and Kansas, and is getting interest from Arkansas, Baylor, Houston, New Mexico, TCU, UTEP, Troy and others.
PERFORMANCE: Stephens finished with four tackles, three tackles for a loss and one sack against Butler CO. (Kan.) CC.
STRENGTHS: A great strongside defensive end's build. He is durable in run situations. He's also quick enough to get after the quarterback and make things happen on passing downs.
WEAKNESSES: Sometimes didn't give 100 percent effort when the ball wasn't going in his direction.
DB DESHAUN THOMAS (6-3/190), Hampton (Va.) Bethel
PERFORMANCE: Thomas had roughly five tackles, with two for a loss, in a 35-3 win over Norfolk (Va.) Granby.
STRENGTHS: Thomas showed tremendous awareness and football smarts, nearly jumping a screen for an interception. He is a solid tackler and has tremendous closing speed with good size.
WEAKNESSES: Thomas needs to improve his hips in coverage as he turns too quickly or keeps his hips open too long. He got beat once by not turning quick enough on a wideout cut.
DT ROBERT THOMAS (6-1/295), Muskogee (Okla.) High
COMMITTED TO: Kansas State
PERFORMANCE: Defensive statistics weren't announced in the scrimmages against Bixby (Okla) High and Broken Arrow (Okla.) High.
STRENGTHS: Solid against the run; he chased the ball all over the field and even got in the quarterback's face a time or two. He is in much better shape than he was in 2007.
WEAKNESSES: Did struggle a few times defeating double-teams.
DT SIOSAIA TUIPULOTU (6-2/285), Euless (Texas) Trinity
COMMITTED TO: Likes Nebraska and Hawaii, and also has offers from, among others, Utah and Louisville.
PERFORMANCE: Anchored the Trinity defensive line that held River Ridge (La.) John Curtis' powerful rushing attack to 145 yards and 12 points.
STRENGTHS: Tuipulotu has great hip flexibility and knee bend. He's strong at the point of attack. He has an athletic body that can hold more weight. He also is still learning the game and has loads of upside.
WEAKNESSES: Though he is athletic, Tuipulotu doesn't necessarily have that quick-twitch first step. He also is still improving on his instincts and awareness.
CB RIJO WALKER (5-10/171), Hampton (Va.) Bethel
PERFORMANCE: Walker had an interception and a 25-yard punt return in a 35-3 win over Norfolk (Va.) Granby.
STRENGTHS: Walker has a good understanding of the game as a return man and on defense. He has excellent ball skills. He pulled in one interception and nearly hauled in a second. He is smooth in his backpedal and is a physical cornerback who has quick feet.
WEAKNESSES: Walker is a bit on the small side and gave a lot of cushion in man-to-man coverage that could be exploited. While he's physical, he needs to add strength.
DT SEAN WARREN (6-0, 292), Blinn College (Texas)
CONSIDERING: Warren is getting interest from UAB, Kansas State, North Texas, SMU, Troy and others.
PERFORMANCE: Warren had four tackles and a tackle for a loss.
STRENGTHS: Warren never ran out of gas. His hustle helped hold Butler County to only 19 yards rushing on 35 attempts.
WEAKNESSES: Is more of a true nose tackle-type than a three-technique tackle.
CB STEVE WILLIAMS (5-10/165), Dallas Skyline
PERFORMANCE: One interception, one pass deflection and several tackles in a scrimmage setting.
STRENGTHS: Despite his slender frame, Williams is eager and effective as a tackler in run support. He showed great instincts and explosiveness out of his cuts, making one impressive pass deflection in the end zone. He followed that up by showing great speed and ball skills tracking an overthrown ball that shouldn't have been catchable.
WEAKNESSES: Williams will need to add weight, but his body looks like as if it is heading in the right direction physically.
S/LB ROD WOODSON (5-11/215), Olive Branch (Miss.) High
STRENGTHS: Woodson is an aggressive defender who can play a variety of positions. He's at his best when attacking, plays 100 mph and can hit like a truck. Woodson is a head-hunter on special teams, too.
WEAKNESSES: Woodson is a tad short to play linebacker but perhaps too bulky to play safety. He could use some work in pass coverage against wide receiver but does well against backs.
LB TOM WORT (6-1/210), New Braunfels (Texas) High
PERFORMANCE: Had 10 tackles and returned two interceptions for touchdowns in a 51-6 victory over Seguin (Texas) High.
STRENGTHS: Has tremendous overall body structure. While making tackles, he really runs through the offensive player, often de-cleating them. He can cover the whole field, from sideline to sideline.
WEAKNESSES: Needs to work on sliding off blocks at the point of attack. Also needs to wrap up on all tackles.
* Prospect evaluations were done by the following Rivals.com analysts:
Mike Farrell: Norfolk (Va.) Granby vs. Hampton (Va.) Bethel and Danville (Va.) George Washington vs. Richmond (Va.) Varina
Jamie Newberg: Tampa Plant vs. Tampa Wharton and Miami Kickoff Classic games featuring Olive Branch (Miss.) vs. Pahokee (Fla.) and Long Beach (Calif.) Poly vs. Miami Northwestern
Jeremy Crabtree: Blinn (Texas) College vs. Butler County (Kan.) C.C., Corsicana (Texas) Navarro J.C. vs. Coffeyville (Kan.) C.C. and scrimmages involving Muskogee, Okla., Owasso, Okla., and Tulsa (Okla.) Booker T. Washington
Barry Every: San Antonio Alamo Heights at Round Rock (Texas) Stoney Point, New Brunfaels (Texas) High at Seguin (Texas) High, Texas Football Classic games featuring San Antonio Reagan vs. Katy (Texas) Cinco Ranch and Burnet (Texas) High vs. Brownwood (Texas) High
Barton Simmons: Rockwall (Texas) Heath vs. Dallas Skyline (scrimmage), Dallas Carter vs. Lancaster (Texas) High, Plano (Texas) West vs. Southlake (Texas) Carroll in the Tom Landry Classic, Herbstreit Varsity Football Series games featuring Mansfield (Texas) Timberview vs. Buford (Ga.) High, Cedar Hill (Texas) High vs. Cincinnati La Salle, Arlington (Texas) Bowie vs. Trotwood (Ohio) Trotwood-Madison and Euless (Texas) Trinity vs. River Ridge (La.) John Curtis