COLUMBUS, Ohio– Five underclassmen were honored with spots on the top offense and top defense performers list from Sunday’s Rivals 3 Stripe Camp presented by adidas, but plenty more had standout performances. Here are the best of the rest.
Recruiting wrap: Buffalo and Toledo were the first two schools to offer Thomas.
Performance: Thomas has a chance to be a great safety. He has a huge frame, covers a ton of ground, and has great ball skills. Wide receivers could not escape his grasp during the cat-and-mouse drills because of his great wingspan. In the one-on-one session, quarterbacks had very little success throwing to receivers in the middle of field against Thomas and they didn’t even try to test him with jump balls down the field.
Recruiting wrap: Jones is waiting on his first offer.
Performance: Jones measured in at 6-foot-8 and 260 pounds and looks more like a future five-star left tackle than a five-star quarterback on the hoof. But when he winds up and throws, he shows impressive arm strength and after testing at Saturday's combine, he also has pretty good athleticism. The event's coaches were skeptical of him at first but by the end of the day he had won over coaches and fellow campers alike. Jones is a future FBS player, it's just a matter of which school will be the first to offer.
Recruiting wrap: Stebbins still awaits his first offer but is hearing from Pittsburgh and Toledo.
Performance: Linebackers are at a disadvantage in the one-on-ones against running backs, so any time a linebacker is making plays in that session, we take notice. Stebbins was not only making plays, but making them against some of the most elusive running backs at the camp. He secured at least one interception in pass coverage, then was very adept at the cat-and-mouse drill.
Recruiting wrap: Syracuse, West Virginia, and Oregon State have offered Devonshire.
Performance: Devonshire is a tough, aggressive defensive back that made wide receivers feel his presence. His physicality was on full display during the cat-and-mouse drills. In one-on-ones, Devonshire had a knack for jarring passes loose just as receivers were grabbing the ball. The sense of timing and anticipation should take Devonshire far.
Recruiting wrap: Mangham holds 16 early offers with the most recent coming from Pittsburgh, Purdue, Syracuse, Temple and UCLA.
Performance: It has already been a good off-season for Mangham, and he kept the momentum with another strong performance. A big back who measured 6-foot-2 and 217 pounds, Mangham can still excel in a camp setting because of his agility and ability to get to top speed quickly. As his offer list shows, he will be the next big thing out of the FBS factory at Detroit Cass Tech.
Recruiting wrap: Miami (Ohio) is the only school to offer Cooper so far.
Performance: Cooper’s athleticism really shined through on Sunday, especially when he had to cover in the open field. Running backs and tight ends could not separate from Cooper during one-on-ones and he was able to tip a number of passes and pulled in at least one interception. He had his ups and downs during the cat-and-mouse, but the way he closed on the ball carrier was certainly eye-catching.
Recruiting wrap: Indiana, Kentucky and Missouri are among Nichols’ early offers.
Performance: The backfield at Cass Tech is going to be crowded next year with Nichols transferring over from Southfield A&T to join Mangham on the Technicians roster. Also intriguing is that Nichols and Mangham are very similar backs. Nichols was particularly impressive in the cat-and-mouse drill where he left several linebackers grasping for air by using his speed to exploit openings.
Recruiting wrap: Knight-Goff has a handful of early offers, including Louisville, Kentucky and Purdue.
Performance: Based on his slender frame, Knight-Goff almost looks like more of a defensive back than a defensive lineman, but when he lined up to take reps in one-on-ones, he surprised with his ability to both run by offensive linemen and shed blocks when he did engage. Most likely he will develop into a hybrid outside linebacker/defensive end, and with his height might be making the smarter move by already testing himself against top offensive linemen in a camp setting.
Recruiting wrap: Grant has already accumulated a dozen offers, including Iowa, Michigan and Notre Dame.
Performance: Grant is a first-kid-off-the-bus type already and looks like he could step onto a college field today. His game is starting to catch up too, as evidenced by his appearance on this list. The Detroit native has great straight-line speed and good ball skills. He can learn to change direction a little more fluidly and his instincts are coming along, but all in all Grant had a really solid day.
Recruiting wrap: Just a freshman, Rogers already has offers from Kentucky, Syracuse and Miami (Ohio).
Performance: The comparison between Rogers and his upperclassman teammate, Rivals100 offensive guard Marquan McCall, are certainly there. Rogers, though, may prove to be a better athlete because he is further ahead of McCall at the same stage. His issue today is that he lacks heights, but being just a freshman means he may have more growth left in him. He compensates for that, though, by being a plus-athlete for the position.
Recruiting wrap: Cincinnati and Purdue have extended early offers to Barber.
Performance: It was hard to stand out among the deep group of defensive linemen who participated, but Barber caught our attention a couple times. He does not look as tall as his listed 6-foot-3 and because of that, likely moves inside to defensive tackle at the next level, where his frame looks capable of handling added pounds. He ran as a defensive end on this day, though, and was able to consistently win reps with his quickness and technique.
Recruiting wrap: Syracuse is the first offer for McKinnie-Harper
Performance: McKinnie-Harper caught our attention during the tackling drill as he showed a variety of moves to shed opposing defensive backs in space. He has quick feet and nice speed allowing him to change directions in a hurry. Those same attributes carried over to the one-on-one portion of the day as he ran sharp routes and did a nice job adjusting to balls in the air on a windy day.