Rivals Camp Series Los Angeles: The Gorney Awards
NORWALK, Calif. - The Rivals 3 Stripe Camp Series presented by adidas in Southern California is in the books. After watching Sunday’s camp, here are the Gorney Awards.
THE ADONIS - Darnell Washington
There might not be a tight end in Rivals history dating back to 2002 that is as impressive from a physical standpoint than Las Vegas (Nev.) Desert Pines’ Darnell Washington, who is all of 6-foot-7 and 260 pounds. The five-star prospect had to go buy new cleats before the camp but that didn’t slow him down at all. He moves like a basketball player, he has hands like an elite receiver and the feeling around camp is that we haven’t seen a tight end like him, maybe ever, at Rivals.
Honorable mention: Five-star linebacker Justin Flowe is a physical specimen who loves showing off his muscles any chance he gets and he plays with such an intensity that one cannot help but love to watch him. Four-star running back Kendall Milton has gotten thicker since we saw him last season but has not lost his speed. It’s hard to believe four-star Noah Sewell can play linebacker so well at 268 pounds but he moves at an elite level. Three-star linebacker Malik Reed checked in at 6-foot-1 and 214 pounds and it looked like he was chiseled out of granite.
LIGHTENING IN A BOTTLE - Kris Hutson
It was fun to watch four-star receiver Kris Hutson during his junior season at powerhouse Bellflower (Calif.) St. John Bosco because he had the speed to separate and blow by everybody and that’s what he did at camp as well. Hutson likes to chirp a little bit, he plays with confidence and an attitude that I like to see. Nobody is going to slow him down, plus he’s an excellent route runner and he makes tough catches, too.
Honorable mention: Seven McGee said people at Oregon are calling him “Baby Mamba” and the 2021 Ducks commit will draw comparisons to DeAnthony Thomas moving forward. He’s so sudden and such a quick-twitch receiver there’s no telling what he’s going to do at any moment. Raleek Brown won the position MVP at the Bay Area Rivals Camp last year and he was back again with his insanely quick feet and impressive burst. The 2022 running back could be even more special if he gets a little bigger.
BULL MARKET - Noah Sewell
The new 2020 rankings are being released this week and Noah Sewell is getting a significant bump - but a longer conversation needs to be had about maybe even going higher. The Orem, Utah, standout checked in at 268 pounds and Sewell is more than capable of staying at inside linebacker. He moves so quickly in space, he’s so physical looking to thump running backs and he can turn and run. It’s amazing someone of his size can do what he does, but Sewell has very little bad weight and could be a force on any defense.
Honorable mention: Kourt Williams is someone that’s going to continue to move up the rankings - and not because he continues to land major offers from top national programs. The St. John Bosco stud can play safety or linebacker, so there’s positional versatility there, he’s a playmaker all over the field and he looks like a million bucks.
PHYSICAL PROWESS - Justin Flowe
This award goes to the best-looking prospect on the hoof and it was a unanimous decision - Justin Flowe is a man. A grown man. What’s so special about Flowe is that he’s not only a weight room warrior but he comes to every event looking to dominate and to physically take over. The five-star has already proven himself to be one of the best prospects in the 2020 class and he still comes to every camp or 7-on-7 tournament to keep getting better. He’s an impressive specimen and I love his mental makeup.
Honorable mention: I had not seen four-star Jordan Banks in a few months and he looks like a million bucks. The Harbor City (Calif.) Narbonne recruit can play linebacker or defensive end, he’s jacked up and he can move as well. Banks was impressive throughout the camp and it’s no shock a lot of SEC schools are enamored with him because he’s a tough, physical, no-nonsense kid. Four-star receiver Gee Scott, Jr., who’s committed to Ohio State, has an awesome build and looks like a potential future star in Columbus.
FANCY FEET - Bijan Robinson
Bijan Robinson had a fantastic day at the camp and even though spots are going to be tight, the four-star running back will be in the running for a spot at the Five-Star Challenge. He showed off light and quick feet during the drills and then he roasted a bunch of defenders and caught passes during one-on-ones. Whichever college lands him, they’re going to have a player who can run between the tackles or catch passes out of the backfield and be a mismatch for most defenses.
Honorable mention: Lavon Bunkley-Shelton is fantastic setting up defensive backs at the line of scrimmage and then quickly getting into his rep and making tough catches. He’s got tremendous feet - and balance - as well and there aren’t many receivers in the West with hands like his. Fancy feet or fancy hands, the four-star has it all.
LUNCH PAIL - Jonah Monheim
This award goes to the guy who does the dirty work at camp and might not get noticed as much as others and Jonah Monheim is a perfect example of that throughout the camp. Drake Metcalf won the position MVP, but Monheim was in the running, he was tough as nails during his reps and he stopped defensive linemen all day. Monheim played at different spots during one-on-ones and did a solid job all day, even if he didn’t win any awards.
Honorable mention: Two defensive linemen who had solid days without landing the position MVP award were Fresno (Calif.) San Joaquin Memorial’s Tobin Phillips and Lehi (Utah) Skyridge’s Ioholani Raass, who kept taking reps, kept working hard and kept impressing. One offensive lineman that looked good and played tough all day was Cade Bennett of Scottsdale (Ariz.) Notre Dame Prep. He battled and won reps and had a good showing.
NEXT ONE UP - Earnest Greene
This award goes to the underclassman who had a fantastic showing at camp and it goes to 2022 offensive lineman Earnest Greene from Bellflower (Calif.) St. John Bosco. More than a few times, people pointed out Greene and couldn’t believe he’s so young and the 2022 recruit backed it up by playing really well at left tackle. Sources say Greene could be the next Wyatt Davis-level recruit out of Bosco and it’s easy to see why. Oregon and Utah have smartly offered already.
Honorable mention: Mission Hills (Calif.) Alemany has two potential stars in linebacker Niuafe Tuihalamaka and athlete Ephesians Prysock, who both looked good physically at the camp. Gardena (Calif.) Serra QB Maalik Murphy, another 2022 recruit, is a future star. It already looks like he has all the tools. Beaux Collins is a fantastic receiver and one of the biggest surprises at the camp was 2022 DB Zion Branch, one of the best-looking recruits at the event.
STICK 'EM - Joshua Jackson
This award goes to the receiver with the best hands at the event and we’re giving it to four-star Joshua Jackson, who was clearly in the running for position MVP because he had an outstanding performance. The Harbor City (Calif.) Narbonne recruit got open against all cornerbacks and then made tough catches when the ball wasn’t perfect. Jackson has proven time and again he’s one of the best receivers in the region and on Sunday he did it again.
Honorable mention: John Humphreys is an outstanding outside receiver with phenomenal hands who has the size to go up and over even big cornerbacks, Scott Jr. made some impressive catches with DBs hanging on him and three-star Ronald Gilliam not only showed off great footwork but also impressive hands throughout the event.
ROCKET ARM - Jake Garcia
Jake Garcia was very much in the running for quarterback MVP because he delivered the ball all over the field, hitting his target every time and showing off a really strong arm. The Harbor City (Calif.) Narbonne QB had a lot of zip on his passes and a lot of control as well and the 2021 quarterback had a really outstanding day all around.
Honorable mention: Three other quarterbacks who really put serious pace on his passes and also kept their consistency were Ohio State commit Jack Miller, 2021 standout Miller Moss and Gardena (Calif.) Serra QB Doug Brumfield, a lefty who can really spin it.
Bryce Young had another solid day and what really stands out about the four-star quarterback who’s committed to USC is his timing with receivers and his vision to see what’s going on and then quickly make a decision. The Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei recruit has a strong arm, too, and has a knack for putting the ball only where his receiver could come down with it.
Honorable mention: NC State commit Ben Finley threw nice passes all day, 2022 recruit Maalik Murphy has star potential and another quarterback who looked good during the event was Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., QB CJ Stroud, who is starting to pick up some strong offers.
THE SNUGGIE - Kelee Ringo
Kelee Ringo is in the running to be the top cornerback in the 2020 class and his performance on Sunday will only make his backers even more convinced about putting him in that top slot. He’s an athletic specimen, he’s big and the DB coach at the camp told me it was clear that the five-star was by far the best defensive back at the event. It was an easy call.
Honorable mention: Jacobe Covington has tremendous length and he had an interception during one-on-ones. He definitely looked good and backed up his ranking. Two cornerbacks who looked good were Macen Williams, the brother of four-star USC signee Max Williams and Isaiah Young, who was a late addition to the camp because he was expected to be on a visit this weekend but he came and locked up receivers all day.