SCOTTSDALE, Ariz.- Desert Mountain High just completed a breakthrough 9-3 season and it just so happens the Northeast Phoenix-area program, led by head coach Tony Tabor, has two of the best prospects in the country for the Class of 2014 on its roster.
Class of 2014 wide receiver Mark Andrews' junior highlights.
The four-star passing connection of quarterback Kyle Allen and wide receiver Mark Andrews has made life miserable on opposing secondaries in the Grand Canyon State this season. On top of their immense talent, Tabor was sure to point out that both prospects are excellent students and have championship-level attitudes.
Something else to point out as it relates to recruiting at both Pac-12 in-state programs. Both Allen and Andrews also have lived in Arizona their entire lives- something that isn’t necessarily common in growing, transient Greater Phoenix. Typically, the more players that have a lifelong attachment to a state, the better your chances are of keeping said players at home- something that definitely has not been happening at the rate that Arizona and Arizona State would like. With one of the best crops of talent on record in the state for the 2014 cycle, it's important for the Wildcats and Sun Devils to not only get their typical share, but up it.
Mark Andrews, WR, Class of 2014
Ratings and Rankings- Andrews is currently rated 94, which equates to four stars, by 247Sports. He is ranked as the nation’s No. 10 wide receiver prospect and the No. 4 overall prospect in Arizona. He rates 0.9548 by 247Composite, which equates to four stars and is ranked No. 67 overall nationally, No. 9 at wide receiver and fourth in Arizona.
Recruiting Notes- Andrews did not take any unofficial visits this season as he and his teammates elected to forego some trips they had planned in order to focus on the high school season. He does plan to visit Arizona unofficially for the Wildcats’ home game with Arizona State.
“I am going to have to start looking at it and narrowing it,” Andrews said. “I haven’t done anything with recruiting yet.” The Cats and Sun Devils have offered, along with Ohio State, Oklahoma, Colorado (most recent), Duke, Michigan, North Carolina, Oregon State, Utah, UCLA, Virginia and Washington State, among others. Having a spread offense could work in the favor of any school that is in the mix. Edwards said that is the style he prefers. Most of the programs right now on his list employ some sort of spread attack. Just a hunch, but Arizona, Oklahoma and Ohio State all should be in the mix when Edwards begins narrowing.
Prospect Notes- After seeing Andrews in person and talking with him, he’s more of a big receiver than a tight end prospect at this point, so 247Sports has changed his ranked position. “No colleges are even talking to me about tight end,” he said. Andrews just completed a monster season with 81 catches for 1,590 yards and 22 touchdowns. On film, he is elusive for a big player and said he loves to use his size and strength to out-muscle smaller defensive backs. Andrews could end up being similar to current Texas A&M receiver Mike Evans but has the potential to be more productive. He’s more athletic and fast than people give him credit for. Andrews also has only scratched the surface of his potential. He just completed his third season of football- ever- as he did not play the sport until his freshman year.
Kyle Allen, QB, Class of 2014
After seeing him in person, it's obvious that four-star 2014 quarterback Kyle Allen has the size to be a legitimate college quarterback.
Ratings and Rankings- Allen is ranked as the nation’s No. 88 overall prospect, the No. 7 pro-style quarterback prospect and the No. 5 overall prospect in Arizona by 247Sports. According to the 247Composite, Allen is No. 108 overall nationally, the No. 5 pro-style quarterback and No. 6 overall in Arizona.
Recruiting Notes- Allen is approaching the double-digit offer mark. His most recent came from Colorado last week. Of the schools that are currently pursuing them, he says that he hears from Arizona State, Ohio State and Duke the most. His recruiters at two of those programs have made an impression.
“I feel like I’ve got good relationships with (Buckeyes offensive coordinator) Tom Herman and (Norvell) from Arizona State. I talk to both of those guys a lot.”
As for the Blue Devils, Allen made an unofficial visit there after camping at North Carolina this past summer. Current Duke quarterback Sean Renfree, who played at Notre Dame Prep in Scottsdale, and Allen have worked out together some, so that connection helps.
“Great campus, great academics,” he said. “It’s a long way, I am still very interested in them.”
Allen has attended three Arizona State home games this year, two as a recruit (Utah and Oregon).
“It’s great that it’s local,” Allen said. “It’s a good thought to play college football close to home, but I am not going to stay close to home for sure. It’s not one of the deciding factors. The new coaching staff at Arizona State really has everything under control. (Sun Devils head coach) Todd Graham is a disciplinary head coach and (offensive coordinator) Mike Norvell has a great offensive mind. He’s really getting things going.”
Allen also attended UCLA’s win against Nebraska on Sept. 8.
“The Rose Bowl is an awesome stadium,” Allen said. “They fill it up well and it gets loud in there. It’s just awesome because it has been there forever. It was just a really good experience.” Arizona also has offered and Allen plans to visit Tucson next weekend for the Wildcats’ game with in-state rival Arizona State.
Arizona “I am going to go down there and try to learn some more things.”
Allen and his family have no current offseason recruiting plans made yet, but he said he does hope to attend an Elite 11 or Nike Camp and perhaps take some visits in the spring and then into next summer.
If Ohio State offers, the Buckeyes can be a big factor here, but they are still working on their 2014 quarterback board. You have to give Arizona State has the edge in-state simply because he's been there more and talked with the Sun Devils' coaches more, but the trip to Tucson gives U of A an opportunity an he is interested in the Cats. There isn’t a clear leader, though, or even a top group of schools in Allen’s mind. Oklahoma State is another program he mentioned.
Prospect Notes- Allen is taller that what he was listed (247Sports had him at 6-foot-1, he’s 6-foot-2 1/2 and could end up 6-3. Tabor raved about Allen’s ability to lead the team and the improvement he has shown from year to year. Size was a question before, but Allen has the frame to have pro potential at quarterback. He’s not towering by any stretch, but his size is a non-factor after seeing him in person.