EAST POINT, Ga. – With lots of the Atlanta area’s top-shelf talent attending college spring games, Saturday’s NUC Five-Star Showcase at Tri-Cities High School was intended to exhibit future talent as well as potential under-the-radar 2013 prospects.
Shamire DeVine moved his size 18 shoes well again Saturday.
Here’s a quick look at our top-10 performers:
Count DeVine among those who could have opted to make a college visit instead of taking the bull’s-eye on his home field. The 6-foot-5, 354-pounder could have mailed it in, too, but instead consistently established himself as a man among boys, arguably only getting beat in one or perhaps two of the dozens of one-on-one reps received.
DeVine, who carries an 89 rating as a high three-star, is making a strong push for four-star status this spring with continued domination. When he anchors, no one uses strength to get past him, and he moves his feet exceptionally well for someone his size at left tackle.
2. Tre' Williams
Alabama and Auburn are already fighting for the 2014 in-state linebacker prospect (St. Paul’s/Mobile), while Florida State and Kentucky have offered as well. Williams (6-2, 224) not only possesses the speed to run with the event’s top scatbacks, but he also showed exceptional hips and football IQ. Expect Williams to be fairly highly ranked next cycle.
Cunningham is a relative unknown who really has only visited Alabama a few times, and the Crimson Tide already have a stud in-state tight end commitment in O.J. Howard. But Cunningham (6-5, 235) might be Howard light, as the Montevallo (Ala.) looks teaming with potential as a tall pass-catcher with sufficient speed and ball skills. He is also hearing from Auburn, Georgia and South Alabama.
Montevallo (Ala.) tight end Korey Cunningham turned a lot of heads with his size, agility and hands.
Summers, a 6-2, 268-pound defensive lineman from Springfield (Tenn.), was the only guy to legitimately pose a physical challenge for DeVine. He’s strong but a bit of a ‘tweener but would be ideal as an end in a 3-4 scheme. Auburn, Vanderbilt, Kentucky and Georgia Tech have sent him mail.
5. Traevon Samuel
This type of setting highlights acceleration and hands – two attributes Samuel (5-8, 172), a 2015 running back from Central High School in Phenix City, Ala., continues to showcase in the spring circuit. As was the case at the MVP Camp Atlanta last month, linebackers were hard-pressed to find a gear to keep up once Samuel made a cut on a route.
Whitehead has been the 2013 darling of the Georgia camp circuit, and he once again proved the top coverage corner at this event. The 5-8, 170-pounder from Booker T. Washington High School just distributed his film this past week and has started hearing from Vanderbilt and Western Kentucky.
7. Kirk Barron
What Barron (6-2, 290) perhaps lacks in height, he compensates for with technique and strength. The barrel-chested 2014 offensive guard from Mishawaka (Ind.) Marian has already visited Iowa, Pittsburgh and Indiana and will swing south from camps at Arkansas, Alabama and Auburn in two months.
Dalton (6-6, 345) could stand to redefine his body a bit, but the Whitewater (Ga.) offensive tackle displayed why teams might be willing to take a flier. Georgia Tech has offered, while he has begun hearing from Tennessee.
Seems like the state of Georgia churns out a handful of undersized speed-rushers every cycle. Ezechukwu (6-2, 230) might be one of the more unheralded in this mold for the ’13 cycle, and he would be worth a look as a 3-4 outside backer in certain systems. He has been to an Ole Miss junior day and is also getting interest from Mississippi State, Georgia Tech, Yale and Princeton.
Camps and combines continue to underline the agility of Bridges-Thompson, a 6-2, 205-pound outside linebacker at Spartanburg (S.C.) High School. A left quad injury cut his day short, but Bridges-Thompson can run and looks pretty on the hoof. Wake Forest has offered and is the three-star prospect’s leader, but South Carolina holds the trump card if it pursues. He is also scheduled to visit Oregon this summer.
Josh Walker, RB, Decatur (Ala.), ‘13
Petera Wilson, LB, White Station (Tenn.), ‘14
Alexander Karr, RT, Christian Bros. (Tenn.), ‘13
Donovan Manning, DT, Gaffney (S.C.), ‘13
Collin Lisa, WR, Chattahoochee (Ga.), ‘14
Channing Stribling, WR, Butler (N.C.), ‘13
Cameron Fraser, OT, Central (Ala.), ‘13
Jevious Terry, CB, ELCA (Ga.), ‘13
Jeremiah Rowland, CB, SE Raleigh (N.C.), ‘14
Dequeszman Kelley, DT, Marion County (Ga.) ‘13
Kenneth Cochrum, CB, Arabia Mountain (Ga.), ‘14
Torei Jones, WR, Tri-Cities (Ga.), ‘13