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Core 6 Athletes Cincinnati Recap

CLEVES, Ohio - Core 6 Athletes hosted its first-ever event outside of the Chicago area on Sunday, heading to the Cincinnati suburbs for its second Showcase of the winter.

Garrett is an elite LB prospect that shined in 1-on-1s and 7-on-7 on Sunday.

There was a plethora of talent on hand including three Top50 prospects in defensive end Malik McDowell, linebacker Clifton Garrett and offensive tackle Jamarco Jones, who all lived up to their big-time billings.

Several other BCS prospects shined as 247Sports takes you inside the event.

1. Jamarco Jones: The Chicago (Ill.) De La Salle offensive tackle was named the overall MVP by staff and media following a dominant effort. The 6-foot-5, 290-pound Jones took on the best pass rushers at the event in McDowell, Dylan Thompson and Chris Slayton and won the majority of his reps. He was at his best holding off the speed rushers coming from the edge. Jones has a good body-type and won’t have to redistribute his weight much at all on the next level. Ranked by 247Sports as the nation’s No. 4 offensive tackle and by the 247Composite as the country’s No. 43 prospect overall, Jones visited Ohio State again last week and is high on several schools including the Buckeyes, Florida, Michigan, Michigan State, Notre Dame and Vanderbilt.

2. Clifton Garrett: The 6-foot-3, 228-pound linebacker has excellent size. When you compare the size to what he shows on film, he is an elite linebacker prospect. Performed very well in 7-on-7, owning the middle of the field and using his long body to break up several passes. Ohio State remains the team to beat for the nation’s No. 2 outside linebacker following his visit on Saturday, however he continues to work through the recruiting process slowly and plans on visiting several SEC schools in the spring.

3. Malik McDowell: The Detroit (Mich.) Loyola standout was a tough match-up during 1-on-1s that only Jones had a chance to handle. Whether he was coming off the edge or spinning inside, McDowell showed the elite athleticism you look for in a defensive lineman. At 6-foot-7, 290-pounds, McDowell can play across the defensive line of scrimmage. Michigan and Notre Dame may have the inside track, but like Garrett, McDowell is also working through the process slowly and is also high on Michigan State and Ohio State among others. He is ranked by the 247Composite as the nation’s No. 2 strong-side defensive end and No. 14 prospect overall .

4. Ian Bunting: It’s a talented a year at tight end in the state of Illinois and the 6-foot-6, 210-pound Hinsdale Central standout may end up being the best one. He was dominant during 7-on-7 play, running away from the smaller defensive backs. Bunting has really good ball skills and catches everything thrown his way. Vanderbilt is his top school but the offer from Oregon on Friday quickly elevated the Ducks into his top two.

5. Dylan Thompson: Worked at defensive tackle on Sunday, and the Lombard (Ill.) Montini Catholic product had his way with the interior offensive linemen. A great looking prospect on the hoof, the 6-foot-5, 270-pound Thompson was quick off the snap and played really well with his hands. Ohio State is the offer he is favoring and will visit the Buckeyes on Feb. 22. He’ll also visit Purdue, Michigan State and Notre Dame in the near future.

6. Dominique Booth: The Indianapolis (Ind.) Pike Top247 receiver shined in 1-on-1s. Has quick route running ability, quick feet and strong hands. The 6-foot-1, 195-pound Booth is a smooth receiver that also got off press coverage and was too physical for the cornerbacks in attendance. Tennessee and Missouri are currently out in front for his signature.

7. Chris Durkin: The strong-armed quarterback from Youngstown (Ohio) Ursuline was throwing ropes inside the facility. The 6-foot-4, 216-pound Durkin was putting the football in tight windows and was actually somewhat intimidating to some of the receivers on hand with the velocity he put on the ball. Spun it well and was accurate. Michigan State is the team to beat. Northwestern could be next to offer.

8. Lonnie Johnson: Went both ways on Sunday, and was one of the more explosive athletes in the building. The 6-foot-3, 190-pound Johnson has good size and versatility. Made plays at both receiver and cornerback. Ohio State remains in front, with Illinois and Nebraska rounding out his top three.

Honorable Mentions

Receivers Jauan Wesley and Jon Vea’ Johnson were two other receivers that shined. Wesley is a quick slot guy that got open deep several times. Illinois has offered and he’ll attend Purdue’s junior day next weekend. Johnson is still waiting on his first offer, but the polished route runner and complete player out of Gary (Ind.) West Side should soon have several BCS offers to consider.

Ithaca (Mich.) High quarterback Travis Smith was on the money during 1-on-1s, proving why he has early offers from Central Michigan and Western Michigan. Nebraska, Duke and Indiana are schools in daily contact with Smith. Smith throws with nice touch and can also put zip on the ball when he has to.
Offensive lineman Ka’John Armstrong of Detroit Loyola and JB Butler of Joliet (Ill.) Catholic had good days. Armstrong had extremely good feet during agility and moved well during 1-on-1s. Butler was a tough obstacle for interior defensive linemen to defeat. He plays a physical brand of football, typically mauling the player in front of him. Armstrong is receiving personal interest from Michigan State, while Butler is hearing from a host of Big Ten and MAC schools.

Linebacker Nile Sykes is a long-bodied athletic outside linebacker with the frame to grow into a defensive end. He took away several passing windows for quarterbacks in 7-on-7 and was also very fluid during position drills. Indiana has impressed early and he’ll be back in Bloomington in April. Will also visit Michigan State in early March.

Lake Zurich (Ill.) High linebacker Colton Moskal is a rangy player that lived around the football on Sunday. Minnesota has offered with Illinois and Duke showing a lot of interest.

Oak Park (Mich.) High sophomore defensive lineman Shahid Bellamy was among the quicker defensive linemen in attendance. A nimble-footed lineman that typically beat the o-lineman with a finesse move. Michigan State is showing the most early interest.

Crete (Ill.) Monee defensive end Chris Slayton continues to prove he’s a BCS prospect. The 6-foot-5, 235-pound Slayton was the top defensive end in attendance after McDowell. Michigan State, Ohio State, Illinois and Ole Miss are showing personal interest.

Novi (Mich.) Catholic Central's Dylan Roney has above average athleticism for the defensive line position where he'll play in college. Took his reps at linebacker on Sunday. Has early offers from Central Michigan and Toledo.

Avon (Ind.) High teammates Mack Duffin and Joey Belden had good days. Both play with a high motor and can get to the quarterback in a number of ways.

Lapeer (Mich.) East teammates in tight end Kyle Rachwal and sophomore offensive lineman Anthony Herbert each performed well. Rachwal was a sure-handed player with a knack for getting open. Herbert could end up being one of the top offensive lineman in the state of Michigan in the class-of-2015. A well put together 6-foot-4, 310-pound prospect that won more than he lost in 1-on-1s, Herbert is already hearing from Michigan, Florida State and LSU. Rachwal visited Michigan five times during the fall.

Keep an eye on Brownsburg (Ind.) High sophomore offensive lineman Evan Mallory, who lined up at guard most of the afternoon and battled with the likes of Dylan Thompson. Mallory is a competitor that pushed for reps. Michigan and Iowa are showing the most early interest.

247Sports Director of Scouting JC Shurburtt contributed to this report.

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