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Future 50: Position-by-position breakdown of a loaded weekend in Florida

Zachariah Branch
Zachariah Branch (Kidd Ryno)

BRADENTON, Fla. — IMG Academy was the place to be this weekend as Under Armour hosted its annual Future 50 camp with some of the top prospects in the 2023 and 2024 classes across the country.

Saturday's action included dynamic position drills to kick things off in the morning followed by a brief one-on-one session before the lunch break. The evening's action wrapped up with a 20-minute 7-on-7 matchup between prospects from the east and west, with a big man challenge at halftime.

After today's performances, here is how Rivals viewed some of the top talents in attendance.


CLASS OF 2023 RANKINGS: Rivals250 | Team | Position | State

CLASS OF 2024 RANKINGS: Rivals250 | Team | Position | State

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Malachi Nelson
Malachi Nelson (Kidd Ryno)

Top Performer: Michael Van Buren, Baltimore (Md.) St. Frances (2024)

Van Buren started off hot in the morning session winning the QB Accuracy Challenge and kept at it during the 1-on-1 portion lasering passes across the field. The 1-on-1s were perhaps made a little easier connecting with the likes of Zachariah Branch, Jalen Hale and Johntay Cook. - Wright

Runner-Up: Malachi Nelson, Los Alamitos (Calif.)

The USC commit had a slow start in the morning session but picked it up in a 7-on-7 setting he has gotten really familiar with this offseason. He was big in leading Team West to a resounding victory as he was finding various receivers with different skillsets, but most notably his future teammate in Zachariah Branch. - Harris

Other notes: Oklahoma commit Jackson Arnold excelled in the morning session in drills but had to battle some unfamiliarity in the 7-on-7 session as his baseball season doesn't allow him to see those settings often. Iowa State commit JJ Kohl was in a similar predicament, but the future Cyclone impressed with his arm talent all day. - Harris



Dylan Edwards
Dylan Edwards (Kidd Ryno)

Top Performer: Dylan Edwards, Derby (Kan.)

If anyone is wondering if Kansas State could see a drop-off at running back after Deuce Vaughn makes his way into the NFL, those doubts should be quieted after his performance this weekend. His speed, route-running, hands and twitch all stood out amongst a small but strong running back group. His performance has cemented him in the four-star conversation moving forward. - Harris

Runner-Up: Jerrick Gibson, Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy (2024)

The top performer position at running back was heavily debated before a final Rivals’ decision was made. Gibson won the top honors via The Future 50, and deservingly so. Gibson’s 4.4 speed and hard cuts make him near impossible to keep up with on the field. What we haven’t seen as much of from Gibson are his hands, and they are fantastic. Gibson is the complete package out of the backfield that will break down collegiate defenses when his time comes. - Wright

Other notes: Despite a rocky offseason, Javin Simpkins made his way back onto the field and flashed at times on Saturday, especially during the 7-on-7 session. Durell Robinson also made his presence felt and helped make up a solid position group during the weekend. - Harris



Zachariah Branch
Zachariah Branch (Kidd Ryno)

Co-Top Performer: Jalen Hale, Longview (Texas)

Jalen Hale doesn't get many opportunities to showcase his talents during the offseason due to a busy track schedule and a rule against club 7-on-7 play at his high school, but the East Texas product took advantage of the opportunity this weekend and shined among a stacked group of receivers. His three touchdown grabs in the night 7-on-7 session showed his ability to create separation, with his second score being a result of strong improvisation skills after a play had developed. Coming out of the weekend, Hale is one of the bigger stock-ups. - Harris

Co-Top Performer: Zachariah Branch, Las Vegas (Nev.) Bishop Gorman

Branch was unstoppable during the 2021 season and has been electric throughout the offseason showcasing the skills at 7-on-7 tournaments and various camps. The hands were on display throughout the day on Saturday as was the route-running breaking ankles with his moves. Speed travels, and Branch made it to the finals of the Fastest Man Competition running neck-and-neck with Kansas standout Dylan Edwards. - Wright

Other notes: Ayden Williams turned heads with a leaping jump ball grab in the end zone late in the 7-on-7 session as his stock will certainly rise coming out of the weekend. Johntay Cook displayed his patience in route running once again which led to a touchdown grab and multiple receptions. While Braylon James wasn't able to connect with his quarterback many times during the 7-on-7 session, his elite athleticism was on full display. - Harris



Francis Mauigoa
Francis Mauigoa (Kidd Ryno)

Top Performer: Francis Mauigoa, Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy

One thing you have to love about Mauigoa, he is not afraid to compete. From the 2021 season with IMG into the offseason, Mauigoa has continued to impress regardless of the camp. As Mauigoa continues to transform his body, he is also evolving with his skills getting college ready. In the Big Man finals, Mauigoa shutdown DaShawn Womack giving a potential preview to coming attractions this fall. - Wright

Runner-Up: Cayden Green, Lee's Summit (Mo.) North

Green was a boss in the trenches at The Future 50, especially during the morning 1-on-1 session. He’s not just big, but also physical using a strong punch and good footwork to keep defensive lineman away. - Wright

Other notes: In what ended up being a strong offensive line group, Miles McVay showed off a strong upper body during reps while European prospects Olaus Alinen and Lucas Simmons displayed their raw traits that have college coaches eager to develop at the next level. - Harris



Jordan Renaud
Jordan Renaud

Top Performer: Jordan Renaud, Tyler (Texas) Legacy

Despite being slightly smaller than some of the other linemen in attendance this weekend, Jordan Renaud used it to his advantage to slip past opposing linemen both on the exterior and interior. A bulk-up will be necessary for the next level, but if he can pair it with his already established pass-rush moves, Renaud has all-conference potential in college. - Harris

Runner-Up: Ernest Willor, Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy (2024)

Another young buck from IMG making his presence felt, Ernest Willor did not look out of place among older competition on Saturday as he paired back-to-back solid sessions with multiple rep wins. - Harris

Other notes: DaShawn Womack was one of the more physically impressive prospects during check-in on Friday, and he paired that with a strong afternoon Saturday. David Stone was strong in the morning session, and PJ Adebawore showed his freakish athleticism both in one-on-one reps and in winning the fastest man challenge among linemen. Of all defensive linemen, Collins Acheampong is probably the most impressive from a physical standpoint and he combines that with similarly freakish athleticism as well. - Harris



Troy Bowles
Troy Bowles (Kidd Ryno)

Top Performer: Troy Bowles, Tampa (Fla.) Jesuit

The camp atmosphere is not always setup for linebackers to succeed, but the odd opportunities can show a different side and versatility if a player rises to the challenge. For Bowles, he impressed with his athleticism during drills but wowed covering receivers during the 7-on-7 event Saturday afternoon. Corners and safeties have trouble keeping up with Zachariah Branch, so it was cool seeing Bowles be able to do the same during their one-time matchup.

Runner-Up: Rico Walker, Hickory (NC)

Stepping back into the second level this weekend, Rico Walker was able to keep his agility while also showing his ability to cover athletic backs out of the backfield.



Desmond Ricks
Desmond Ricks (Kidd Ryno)

Top Performer: Desmond Ricks, Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy (2024)

One great thing about The Future 50 was getting to watch 2023 five-star corner Cormani McClain and five-star 2024 corner Desmond Ricks work rep after rep during the morning drills. The top-rated defenders at the respective positions and classes stayed true to form with their technique, speed and instincts. That little separation between the two came during the 7-on-7 event with Ricks blanketing receivers a little tighter. - Wright

Runner-Up: Javien Toviano, Arlington (Texas) Martin

It's tough to find a more consistent defensive back from the weekend than Javien Toviano who showed once again that he is one of the more technically sound defensive backs in the country. Time will tell if his ceiling is higher at corner or safety, but the versatility to play either is still very much a possibility at the next level. - Harris

Other notes: Dijon Johnson was stiff in coverage in both sessions as the local Tampa product continues his strong offseason. Malik Muhammad had yet another strong showing after a standout performance earlier this summer at Overtime 7v7 as he has yet to let any pass-catcher step in front of him and overwhelm him despite physical challenges at times. Cormani McClain used his overwhelming length to stick with bigger receivers, while his quick change in direction helps him move well with speed threats as well. - Harris



Joenel Aguero
Joenel Aguero (Kidd Ryno)

Top Performer: Joenel Aguero, Danvers (Mass.) St. John's Prep

Aguero was the only player from the state of Massachusetts to compete at The Future 50 and did right by his state at the camp. The route recognition and refusal to bite on fakes and stutter steps frustrated receivers and quarterbacks. Aguero also has that extra gear to close gaps when the ball is in the air. Good thing the campers weren’t in pads, Aguero looked like he was in midseason form from a physical standpoint ready to bring the hurt down the alley. - Wright

Runner-Up: Peyton Bowen, Denton (Texas) Guyer

Bowen got a laugh from his sideline during the 7-on-7 session when he picked off his high school quarterback, Jackson Arnold, in the end zone, but it was just yet another example of his patience and ability in the defensive backfield. His consistency in both sessions on Saturday stood out amongst a loaded defensive back group. - Harris

Other notes: Texas products Ryan Yaites and Jordon Johnson-Rubell are both prospects that have ample experience at corner, but both showed their ability to move around the secondary this weekend. The younger Johnson-Rubell has cemented himself among the top defensive backs in his class as his stock should only continue to rise with his junior season at IMG upcoming. - Harris