July 25, 2007

Juniors make noise at Friday Night Lights

GAINESVILLE, Fla. - The class of 2008 stars weren't the only ones to shine at Friday Night Lights on the campus of the University of Florida on Friday night. There were many future stars from the class of 2009 on hand as well and some impressed as much as their elders led by North Carolina running back Desmond Scott.

Scott, a 5-foot-9, 178-pounder from Durham (N.C.) Hillside, was arguably the best running back at the event despite being more than a month away from being eligible for his first written offer. Scott entered the event with verbal offers from Georgia, NC State, North Carolina, Tennessee, Alabama and many others. He left the event with an offer from the Gators as well.

Scott showed off his quick feet and blazing speed in many drills but it was in the one-on-ones where he flashed special ability. Scott ran excellent routes and made a few eye-popping catches against some top linebackers. Scott did everything with ease and showed why he will be one of the top players on the east coast next season.

Not far behind Scott was Chesapeake (Va.) Great Bridge wide receiver Logan Heastie. Heastie, a 6-foot-2, 181-pounder, worked with the B Group of wideouts because of his age but stood out amongst many 2008 receivers. Heastie ran good routes and showed off soft hands on a couple of out patterns. His quickness is unquestioned at his size. Heastie has an early offer from Boston College.

Joining Heastie in the B Group was 2009 wideout Je'Ron Stokes from Philadelphia (Pa.) Northeast. Stokes, a 6-foot-1, 178-pounder, showed off his downfield speed on numerous occassions and was a tough assignment for any cornerback. Stokes doesn't have a verbal offer yet, but his first can't be far off.

Another offensive standout was Miami (Fla.) Killian running back Lamar Miller. Miller, a 5-foot-11, 180-pounder, was the fastest player at Florida's camp this summer and displayed his explosive quickness and nifty feet. He'll have offers very early in the process.

As expected, many of the quarterbacks in attendance were from the class of 2009. The biggest and best was Philadelphia (Pa.) Cardinal O'Hara gunslinger Tom Savage. Savage is a huge quarterback at 6-foot-3 and 231 pounds and has a cannon of an arm. The pro-style signal-caller has a deliberate delivery at this stage but the ball reaches its target very quickly. His accuracy is also excellent and he was on target during the one-on-ones. Savage has verbal offers from Michigan, Miami and others and will be one of the top quarterbacks in his class.

A few other 2009 quarterbacks of note include San Diego (Cali.) Scripps Ranch star Tate Forcier, Mobile (Ala.) St. Paul's standout A.J. McCarron, Blue Springs (Mo.) South High stud Blaine Dalton and Ocala (Fla.) Trinity's Rob Henry. McCarron was the most accurate of the trio and looked very comfortable. Forcier struggled at times but still showed off good footwork and some zip on his passes. Henry surprised with his accuracy and improved arm strength.

The defensive side of the ball was well represented with 2009 standouts as well, at least in the defensive backfield. Miami (Fla.) Coral Reef's Frankie Telfort could play linebacker in college but he was outstanding as a defensive back on Friday. Telfort, at 6-foot-0 and 200 pounds, ran with many speedy receivers including 2008 stud Lamaar Thomas in the one-on-ones.

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