The sixth annual Offense-Defense All-America Game on Dec. 29 at Cowboys Stadium will feature some big-time running backs and plenty of talent on the offensive and defensive lines.
Impressive group of running backs
The game will also feature a highly touted group of running backs with many headed to BCS programs.
The East team will be led by Virginia Tech commit J.C. Coleman, a 5-7, 180-pounder who missed three games in 2011 due to an injury and still finished with over 1,970 yards and 25 touchdowns as he led his team to a state championship. Rivals.com rates the standout as the No. 4 all-purpose and 102nd-best prospect in the nation.
"Coleman is a shifty and explosive back who can score at any point," said Offense-Defense Director of Player Personnel Josh Buchanan, "It would not surprise me to see him win MVP honors."
Rounding out the roster is going to be Stone Mountain (Ga.) Stephenson running back Mike Davis, Boca Raton (Fla.) High's Keith Byars II, and George Morris of Lawrenceville (Ga.) Central Gwinnett.
Davis is a 5-10 200-pounder with offers from Alabama, Clemson, Florida, South Carolina, Tennessee, Miami, Florida State, Oklahoma, Auburn, Georgia Tech, North Carolina, Penn State, and many others. Rivals.com rates Davis as the 95th-best player overall and the No. 6 running back in the nation.
"Davis is fast and has great change of direction ability," said Buchanan, "He is a true impact player with a second gear and great vision."
The West roster is loaded with talent as well led by two Ohio State commitments in Glenoak's Bri'onte Dunn and St. Francis Desales' Warren Ball. Dunn is a 6'1 220-pounder while Ball also brings size at 6'2 215 pounds. Rivals.com rates Dunn as the No. 10 running back 136th-best prospect in the country while Ball is the #15 running back and 228th-best player in the country.
"Both Dunn and Ball are big, productive backs with good strength," said Buchanan, "They will give Ohio State a loaded backfield for the next four years."
O-D Bowl attracts highly touted offensive linemen
The East roster is loaded with plenty of four-star prospects and BCS commitments. This year's tackle group is highlighted by four-star tackle Jake Meador, a 6-7, 305-pounder from Whiteland High School (Ind.). Meador is committed to Ole Miss and is rated the No. 33 tackle by Rivals.com.
"Meador is a massive tackle with great length and potential to play in the NFL," said Buchanan, "He is a guy we are extremely excited to get."
Joining him at tackle will be four-star Clemson commit Javarius Leamon and Vanderbilt commit Adam Butler.
The East guards are all four-star prospects this year. They are anchored by North Carolina commitment J.J. Patterson, the No. 10 guard in the country by Rivals.com.
Southern Miss commit Caleb Peterson, is the 47th-best tackle in the nation by Rivals.com but is projected to guard at USM and will make the transition in the game.
Auburn (Wash.) High center Cory English has also accepted an invitation to the game and will be joined some at center by guard/center prospect and Washington State commit Denzell Dotson.
Two highly rated guards have also accepted invitations in four-star prospect Brandon Fanaika, Poutasi's cousin, and Texas A&M commitment Kimo Tipoti.
Stacked along the defensive line
The East roster will feature one of the hidden gems in this year's class in Georgia Tech defensive end commit Francis Kallon, a 6-6 260-pounder rated as the 21st-best end in the nation by Rivals.com. Joining him will be three Stone Mountain (Ga.) Stephenson players including 6-3 240-pound Virginia Tech commit Jarontay Jones, 6-3 255-pound South Carolina commitment Carlos Hood, and 6-4 280-pound Florida commitment Jafar Mann.
"Kallon has potential to be a first day pick in four years because of his frame, speed, and upside, " said Buchanan, "Adding to that Jones, Hood, and Mann who all have the talent to be starters in the ACC and SEC and we have seen plenty of NFL starters from those two conferences."
Filling out the East roster will be Clemson defensive end Martin Aiken, Florida State defensive tackle commit Dalvon Stuckey, and 6-4 285-pound uncommitted defensive tackle Jamil Pollard.
The West roster will be anchored by four-star defensive tackle Korren Kirven, who will be joined by the C.F. Vigor duo of end JaMichael Winston, a 6-5 230-pound Arkansas commitment, and tackle Darius Philon, a 6-2 275-pound Alabama commitment.
Joining Winston at end will be Ohio State commit Se'Von Pittman and Vanderbilt commits Josh Dawson and Caleb Azubike, all four-star prospects.
Filling out the West roster at tackle will be Iowa commit Jaleel Johnson and Kentucky commitment Thomas Chapman.