Anu Solomon proved himself at camps, combines, All-Star games and on Friday night.
Whether it’s the unheralded prospect that didn’t have many offers to his credit, the highly ranked prospect that never gets talked about or the early commit that everyone forgot about, sleepers can come in many shapes and sizes. You may not know their name now, but you will in due time.
We take a look at each Pac-12 program’s 2013 signing class and give you the top sleeper that you will soon be hearing about.
Anu Solomon, QB, Las Vegas (Nev.) Bishop Gorman – Due to his size at only about 6-foot-0, Solomon gets over looked at times in the national quarterback conversation but few can boast the kind of high school career that Solomon put together. Playing at one of the top high school programs in the country, Solomon threw for over 10,000 yards in his career and mixes in the kind of athleticism that will allow him to thrive under Rich Rodriguez.
Corey Smith, DE, New Orleans (La.) O.P. Walker – At 6-6, 270 pounds, Smith has the kind of elite-level size that you just can’t teach. The New Orleans native finished his senior season with 14 tackles for loss, 12 sacks and a remarkable seven forced fumbles.
Johnny Ragin, OLB, Wilsonville, Oreg. – Ragin was a late addition to the Cal 2013 class after a decommitment from BYU. His size and athleticism wowed analysts at the Nike Training Camps and the elite invite-only event The Opening. Athletically, Ragin is one of the top linebackers in the country and should really emerge as he fills out physically.
Phillip Lindsay, RB, Denver (Colo.) South – Lindsay was one of the earliest commitments for Colorado but after tearing his ACL in the first game of his senior season, he became the forgotten man. Lindsay’s junior season saw him rush for 1,700 yards and compile 91 tackles on defense. Even as a senior, Lindsay played through an ACL tear for three games averaging over 9.5 yards per carry on 31 attempts.
Chris Seisay, CB, American Canyon (Calif.) High School – Though he’s rated as a four-star by 247Sports, Seisay has flown under the radar on the national scene and many around the Oregon program feel that he could be the gem of this 2013 group. A prototypical big defensive back with great fluidity, Seisay’s name will go national quickly during his career in Eugene.
Charles Okonkwo, CB, Fontana (Calif.) Summit – Oregon State seemingly has a signing class full of high upside sleeper type prospects and Okonkwo certainly fits that bill. He’s an instinctive cornerback that measures in at 6-1 with the speed and natural defensive back skills to develop into a lockdown type defender.
Mike Tyler, DE, Broadview Heights (Ohio) Brecksville-Broadview Heights – Tyler has the size and the athleticism that you want out of a defensive end in major college football but heading into his senior season he was still raw. However the former Vanderbilt commit posted a school record 18 sacks as a senior and seems to be only just touching his potential.
Kenneth Clark, DT, Rialto (Calif.) Carter – Clark is not underrated but he’s underdiscussed. The athletic and explosive interior defender was dominant at the Cal-State All-Star Game and displayed some scary ability. A quick-twitch athlete with natural strength, Clark should flourish with some time in the UCLA strength program.
Khaliel Rodgers, C, Elkton (Md.) Eastern Christian – It’s not easy to identify a sleeper in a class of nothing but four-star prospects so we’ll get creative and go with Rodgers. He’s the pick because his frame doesn’t scream elite and he’s not at a sexy position but between the whistles and between the lines, there may not be a better pound-for-pound, inch-for-inch offensive lineman in the 2013 class.
Harrison Handley, TE, Sandy (Utah) Alta – An in-state talent, Handley could become a local steal for the Utes due to a 6-6, 210-pound frame that should easily add weight effectively. When the weight comes, Handley will be a mismatch opportunity at tight end and due to his natural wide receiver skillset.
Dane Crane, C, Rancho Santa Margarita (Calif.) Santa Margarita – Though he’s not going to turn many heads when he walks onto the field, Crane is exactly the type of player you want in the middle of your offensive line. He’s got fantastic feet, plays with a mean streak and has the mental acuity to handle the pressures of the center position. We expect he’ll be a good one at Washington.
Isaac Dotson, QB, Newport (Wash.) High School – A Washington native, Dotson isn’t from an area heavily trafficked by college coaches and spent much of his recruitment with the likes of Montana and Eastern Washington chasing him. However, the 6-3 prospect proved he was legit with a strong Elite 11 regional performance and his film backed it up. When Mike Leach came calling, he jumped on board and we expect he’ll hear his name called again.